What is Asthma?

Asthma is a long-term disease.  If you have asthma, at times the air passages of your lungs become inflamed.  When this happens your airways get red and swollen.  They become narrow, making it harder for you to breathe.  You may also wheeze or cough.  Even if you feel good, your airways become inflamed for certain things such as smoke or dust.  Colds or allergies can also trigger asthma attacks.

 Asthma Image


How is it Treated?

Most people with asthma take 2 kinds of medicines.  One is called controller medicine.  These medicines help control the inflammation so you feel and breathe better.  Controller medicines work only if you take them every day, as your doctor tell you.  Another kind of medicine is quick-relief or rescue medicines.  These medicines dilate the airway and make it easier for you to breathe.  These medicines should only be used for quick relief when you are coughing or wheezing, or when your chest feel tight.

 Asthma Triggers

How can I Control my Asthma?

Try to avoid things that irritate the lungs such as air pollution, tobacco smoke, or perfumes.  Avoiding pet hair and controlling seasonal allergies may help.  Avoid infections and get a flu shot every year.


When Should I See a Provider?

If you are having shortness of breath and wheezing or your symptoms are not being controlled with your medications you should call your health care provider or contact the Health Center at 392-6300.