Tips for controlling exercise-induced asthma

exercise-induced asthma

I’ve been jogging every day for the past 3 years and recently found out that I have asthma. How can I keep jogging without triggering asthma attacks?

What Is Exercise-Induced Asthma?


Like it sounds, exercise-induced asthma is asthma that is triggered by vigorous or prolonged exercise or physical exertion. Most people with chronic asthma experience symptoms of asthma during exercise. However, there are many people without chronic asthma who develop symptoms only during exercise.

Symptoms

Signs and symptoms of exercise-induced bronchoconstriction may begin during or a few minutes after exercise, and they may persist for 30 minutes or longer if left untreated. The signs and symptoms may include:
  • Coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest tightness or pain
  • Fatigue during exercise
  • Poorer than expected athletic performance
  • Feeling out of shape even when you're in good physical shape
  • Avoidance of activity (a sign primarily among young children)

How to keep jogging without triggering asthma attacks?

  • Obtain a treatment and prevention plan from your physician.
  • Alert instructors and coaches about the existence of any treatment plan.
  • Medicate before exercising per your physician’s instruction.
  • Warm up slowly to increase heart rate gradually and cool down slowly after exercise.
  • Carry your bronchodilator with you always if one was prescribed.
  • Wear a scarf or mask over your mouth and nose during cold weather to warm and moisten the air you breathe.
  • Wear an allergy mask over the mouth and nose when exercising during pollen season.

When to see a doctor

See your doctor if you experience any signs or symptoms of exercise-induced bronchoconstriction. Because a number of conditions can cause similar symptoms, it's important to get a prompt and accurate diagnosis.

Get emergency medical treatment if you have worsening symptoms.

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