Exercise Induced Asthma – Causes Symptoms Treatment – Keep Fit Safely
It is believed that over 300 million people in the world are affected by exercise induced asthma.
For young people in particular this can impose serious and depressing restraints on their ability to engage in sports and games. The usual remedy to asthma and exercise given by the medical establishment is to avoid most forms of exercise altogether.
So what are the symptoms of exercise induced asthma and what can be done to allieviate or eliminate it?
Symptoms and Causes of Exercise Induced Asthma
If you experience any of the following after working out for 5 to 20 minutes then you may well be suffering from exercise induced asthma:coughing , wheezing, shortness of breath, tight chest or chest pains. Some of these can occur if you are just generally out of condition so it is worth visiting your doctor for a proper diagnosis, even if you do not choose to take the drugs you will inevitably be offered.
There are a number of issues to consider with this approach (or lack of approach!). The first is that the general health and fitness of the individual will suffer, thus leading to a further lowered immune system and long term potentially making the asthma worse.
The second is that if the exercise is undertaken correctly, then it can actually lead to a strengthening of the lungs and airways thus helping to prevent or at least to significantly reduce the prevalence of exercise induced asthma.
One major trigger for asthma induced exercise is the drying out of the airways in the lungs brought about by increased breath rate in a dry atmosphere, so where possible exercise should be undertaken where there is a natural humidity present in the air.
If you are working out at home, this could be achieved with the use of a humidifier, trial and error revealing what degree of humidity works for you
Exercising outdoors may be beneficial but care should be taken to avoid sudden changes in temperature and in particular on very cold days as this will have a detrimental effect on the airways.
How to Stay Fit With Exercise Induced Asthma
Swimming should be the ideal form of exercise, however most public pools use chlorine based disinfectants and chlorine is a serious irritant for the human body as a whole and the lungs in particular. Indeed chlorine was the base for the mustard gas used in WW1 to kills soldiers by attacking the lungs. Hardly healthy for an asthmatic.
There is also a considerable danger from showering after exercise or just the normal morning shower. Chlorine has a low vaporisation temperature so that when you take your shower you are literally inhaling chlorine gas indeed, research has shown that up to two thirds of our daily exposure to chlorine may be in the form of vapour when showering. Fortunately this problem can be easily overcome by the use of a good shower filter.
Walking, biking and hiking are also good sporting activities. Team sports that require short bursts of energy, such as, football, tennis, short distance track and field events and baseball are less likely to bring on symptoms than sports that have a lot of ongoing activity such as football, basketball, hockey or long-distance running.
In conclusion, getting to know your body, the triggers and your personal limits whilst applying the above information should mean that you can enjoy a reasonable sporting life without letting exercise induced asthma spoil it for you.