| World Asthma Day - May 03, 2011
Asthma is a common chronic inflammatory disease of the airways characterized by variable and recurring symptoms, reversible airflow obstruction, and bronchospasm. The disease can not be cured, but it can be controlled. This year on 3rd May 3, 2011 Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA) has choose the theme “You Can Control Your Asthma” to celebrate World Asthma Day to improve asthma awareness and care around the world.
The first World Asthma Day, in 1998, was observed in more than 35 countries in union with the first World Asthma Meeting held in Barcelona, Spain. Partaking has been greater than before with every World Asthma Day held ever since then, and the day has turned out to be one of the world's most significant asthma wakefulness and education events. From then on, the day has been observed on the first Tuesday of May.
The main purpose is to generate knowledge of the disease, its appropriate care, defensive methods amid the general public, health care providers, employees as well as government officials. There are an enormous number of people who go through from asthma and its abrupt attacks. So to put off these deadly attacks and to diminish the soreness and miseries of the asthma patients as well as their relative members by making available the most excellent accessible medical help is the main objective of the world asthma day.
The airways carry air into and out of the body. In asthma patient these airways are inflamed and very sensitive; thus tend to react strongly to certain inhaled substances. As a consequence the muscles around the airways tighten, becoming narrower and causing less air to flow into the lungs. Also the cells in the airways produce more mucous than normal that further narrows the airways, making breathing difficult.
Asthma attacks can last for minutes to days, and can become dangerous if the airflow is severely restricted.
- Cough with or without sputum (phlegm) production
- Pulling in of the skin between the ribs when breathing (intercostal retractions)
- Shortness of breath that gets worse with exercise or activity
- Wheezing, which:
- Comes in episodes with symptom-free periods in between
- May be worse at night or in early morning
- May go away on its own
- Gets better when using drugs that open the airways (bronchodilators)
- Gets worse when breathing in cold air
- Gets worse with exercise
- Gets worse with heartburn (reflux)
- Usually begins suddenly
Other symptoms that may occur with this disease:
- Bluish color to the lips and face
- Decreased level of alertness, such as severe drowsiness or confusion, during an asthma attack
- Extreme difficulty breathing
- Rapid pulse
- Severe anxiety due to shortness of breath
Asthma symptoms can be reduced by:
- Abnormal breathing pattern --breathing out takes more than twice as long as breathing in
- Breathing temporarily stops
- Chest pain
- Nasal flaring
- Tightness in the chest
If proper care is taken, asthma attack can be prevented. So asthma patient do not panic as “You Can Control Your Asthma”.
- Following asthma action plan
- Identifying and avoiding asthma triggers.
- Monitoring breathing
- Taking medicine timely.
- Covering bedding with "allergy-proof" casings to reduce exposure to dust mites.
- Removing carpets from bedrooms and vacuum regularly.
- Using only unscented detergents and cleaning materials in the home.
- Keeping humidity levels low and fix leaks to reduce the growth of organisms such as mold.
- Keeping the house clean and keep food in containers and out of bedrooms.
- Avoiding tobacco smoke from the home.
|By ASMA AHMED
B.Pharm(North South University)