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What Makes You Wheezy?
On February 5, 2009 @ 6:57 am In All Articles,Asthma Basics
From colds to cold air, there’s a lot beyond allergies that could be causing your asthma symptoms. Sometimes it takes a little investigative work to discover patterns to symptoms. So armed with your Sherlock Holmes magnifying glass, let’s dust surfaces and find your asthma thumbprint.
The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI) outlines five classifications of asthma:
Most people with asthma fall into more than one category, but that’s not the end of the clue trail. Asthma symptoms can also be caused by irritants like perfumes or cold air, even laughter or emotional upset. You aren’t allergic to these things, but an allergy to something else may cause low levels of inflammation in your airways that leads to symptoms when your lungs are exposed to additional insults (such as fumes or rapid breathing during laughing or emotional upsets).
It may also be difficult to separate symptoms of asthma from those caused by carrying around too much weight and not getting enough exercise – or did poorly controlled asthma lead to sedentary living and weight gain? It’s the subject of great debate in the medical community.
Ready to track down what’s provoking asthma symptoms? Start with the clues provided in the “Types of Asthma” chart below – general categories of asthma and some common allergens, irritants and activities that can set off asthma symptoms. Circle the ones you know or suspect may be problematic. Underline those you are exposed to but haven’t noticed directly cause asthma symptoms. Your physician will find this information very helpful.
Track your symptoms daily using AANMA’s AsthmaTracker®. Start today and continue until your symptoms have been completely resolved and well managed for at least three months. People who use this tool or a similarly detailed system for tracking symptoms and responses to medications will begin to see patterns emerge faster than those who trust their memories when asked to retrieve important information. Of course, you’ll need to share the information with a physician and/or nurse educator who can adapt your written treatment plan accordingly.
You don’t need to do all this sleuthing by yourself. There’s plenty of help available through AANMA’s Helpline by calling 800.878.4403 or e-mailing AANMAHelpline@ aanma.org. And a board-certified allergist can help uncover clues to your unique asthma thumbprint. Visit www.acaai.org and www.aaaai.org for online allergist locators.
|Type of Asthma||Definition||Triggers||Prevalence|
|Exercise-Induced Asthma (EIA)||
Source: American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, www.aaaai.org 
First published: The MA Report, October 2007
Updated: February 2009
Article printed from Allergy and Asthma Network Mothers of Asthmatics: http://www.aanma.org
URL to article: http://www.aanma.org/2009/02/what-makes-you-wheezy/
URLs in this post:
 www.aaaai.org: http://www.aaaai.org
 Exercise-Induced Asthma: Not a Walk in the Park: http://www.aanma.org/2009/02/exercise-induced-asthma-not-a-walk-in-the-park/
 Sleep Matters: Getting a Good Night’s Sleep With Asthma and Allergies: http://www.aanma.org/2009/02/sleep-matters-getting-a-good-night%e2%80%99s-sleep-with-asthma-and-allergies/
 The Right Preschool Makes a Difference: http://www.aanma.org/2012/05/the-right-preschool-makes-a-difference/
 Facing the Facts: Recognize the Signs of Asthma: http://www.aanma.org/2009/02/facing-the-facts-recognize-the-signs-of-asthma/
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