Your Life’s Breath

Asthma can cause discomfort, disruption, and even life-threatening attacks. May is Asthma Awareness Month; if you or someone you know has asthma, it’s a good reminder to examine triggers and treatments.

While there is no cure for asthma, there are many ways to manage symptoms and enhance quality of life. But what works today might not be the most effective approach next year, or next season; severity can change over time, requiring different remedies.

Keep a diary to reveal changes in triggers and treatment effectiveness as well as determine whether your asthma is worsening or improving. Each night, jot down notes about your exposure to common asthma causes, including:

Physical activity
Environmental factors such as dust, perfume, animals, or chemicals
Certain medications, including beta blockers and aspirin.

Also record the time and severity of symptoms, along with the use and effects of quick-relief bronchodilators and other inhalers.

If your diary reveals new triggers, increased (or decreased) frequency and intensity of attacks, or changes in effectiveness of remedies, talk to your doctor about reevaluating your treatment plan.

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