What Is Asthma?

If you’re experiencing shortness of breath, coughing or chest tightness, your symptoms may be the result of asthma. This chronic lung condition causes inflammation and narrowing of the airways. Asthma symptoms are often the result of allergies, and our specialists at Charleston ENT & Allergy can help you manage yours.

What Causes Asthma?

Asthma is likely a combination of environmental and genetic factors. There are several types of asthma.

  • Allergy-induced asthma is the result of airborne substances, like pollen, pet dander or mold spores.
  • Exercise-induced asthma is the result of physical activity and is often worse when the air is cold and dry.
  • Occupational asthma is the result of fumes, gases or dust in the workplace.
Woman with a backpack on in a desert setting is using a red inhaler.

What Does Asthma Feel Like?

Asthma symptoms vary in severity. For some, they’re a minor inconvenience, and for others, they can interrupt daily activities and lead to asthma attacks.

Symptoms of asthma include coughing, shortness of breath, wheezing, tightness, pain or pressure in the chest. You may also experience difficulty breathing or trouble sleeping.

How Is Asthma Diagnosed?

Your provider will perform a physical exam and ask about the symptoms you’ve been experiencing. You may also complete lung function tests, which will allow your doctor to determine the amount of air that moves in and out as you breathe.

What Treatments Are Available?

Though there is no cure for asthma, there are a variety of options for managing your symptoms. Prevention and long-term control can help reduce asthma flare-ups or attacks.

Medications for asthma include bronchodilators, which open the airways and remove mucus from the lungs, and anti-inflammatories, which reduce swelling and limit mucus production.

Asthma medication is typically taken with an inhaler, a canister that delivers mist or sprays directly into a person’s lungs. This is beneficial for someone with asthma because it opens the airways more quickly than medication in pill or liquid form. If you’re experiencing asthma, our team at Charleston ENT & Allergy is here to help. Our doctors will provide the highest quality of care while customizing treatment for your individual needs. Contact us today to get started.

Call Charleston ENT & Allergy at (843) 766-7103 for more information or to schedule an appointment.