Womens Forum - Live, Love, Inspire

  • 48fb
  • 48tw
  • 48tw
  • 48pin
Home
  • Share on Tumblr

Adult Onset Asthma

adult_onset_asthma

If It's Getting More Difficult to Breathe These Days

You are starting to have problems breathing at certain times during the day. You have never had these issues before, but it is getting worse. The fact that it might be asthma never entered your mind until a friend suggested it.  After reading a pamphlet you realize that you have all of the symptoms in adults suffering from asthma. Though you may think that it is impossible to get asthma as an adult, (you never had asthma as a kid) it is actually becoming more common all the time. The reason for the increase in asthma sufferers is not known, but it is suspected that environmental pollutants play a significant role.

Adult Onset Asthma More Prevalent in Women

Adult onset asthma in women is more common than it is with males. The reason for this is not known. One of the suppositions is that females are more likely to undergo significant hormonal changes that can affect their lungs. These changes happen around pregnancy and menopause.

Other factors that can contribute to the causes of adult onset asthma include irritants encountered both at home and at work; having contracted an especially virile virus; being obese and having diagnosed allergies.  It is interesting to note that people who are allergic to cats seem to be more susceptible to asthma than others. This could also be a factor in women being more susceptible. Women who own cats are at an almost three to one margin risk over men.

Adults threatened with asthma for the first time are more rare than children who have asthma. Unfortunately, the adult form is usually much more serious of a health threat. Adults are more likely to be hospitalized than children, the attacks are longer, and they happen with greater frequency. Adult onset asthma can be accurately diagnosed, although it may take a number of testing periods. Males are more often diagnosed with either chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or chronic bronchitis.  Interestingly enough, women with pulmonary disease are under diagnosed.  When this happens they are not treated properly and their condition may worsen.

There are four classifications of the disease. Mild intermittent asthma occurs when you have episodes less than two times per week and maintain greater than 80% of lung function. Mild persistent asthma is the most common for adult onset asthma. The symptoms occur greater than twice per week and lung function is still greater than 80%. Moderate persistent asthma sufferers have symptoms daily and a lung function between 60% and 80%. The worst type, labeled as severe persistent, occurs when symptoms occur continuously and lung function is less than 60%.

Treatment usually includes administering an inhalant medication daily and/or when attacks occur. Steroidal anti-inflammatories reduce swelling and mucus production. Bronchodilators decrease the tightening of the muscle bands around the airways. These are the two most common treatments for adult onset asthma. If the condition is very bad your doctor may also give you some type of oral medication.

Whenever you start to feel your chest tightening and have an inability to breathe,  make sure that you see a doctor. It is imperative that you take care of the condition before it worsens. Asthma can lead to other complications if not treated properly.

  • Share on Tumblr