Do I Have Asthma? Recognizing the Signs in Adults
Even if you have chronic coughing, wheezing, or shortness of breath, asthma is probably the last thing
on your mind. After all, if you had asthma, you would’ve surely found out as a child, right?
Many people do not receive an asthma diagnosis until they are well into adulthood. Because the condition has many triggers, your current symptoms could be caused by a new environmental element, or simply by changes in your immune system.
Don’t brush off your symptoms as allergies, sinus problems, or being out of shape. Understand the warning signs of asthma and the importance of getting any related symptoms checked out.
Asthma is often misunderstood, which is why so many adults attribute their symptoms to a different health issue. It is a chronic lung disease that causes inflamed or narrowed airways, leading to a variety of different issues, including:
Persistent coughing is the most common symptom in adults; however, many other conditions can cause this. Before an adult can receive an official asthma diagnosis, several other diseases will need to be ruled out including whooping cough, pneumonia, postnasal drip, and COPD.
Assessing Your Risk
While anyone can be affected by asthma, certain groups are more at risk. Knowing these risk factors and sharing all pertinent information with your primary care provider can help expedite your diagnosis and relieve your symptoms. Consider the following:
- Family History: You may be at an increased risk for asthma if you have a parent, sibling, or other close relative with the condition.
- Allergies: Not everyone that has allergies is at risk for asthma, but most people with asthma have some sort of allergy that triggers their symptoms.
- Sinus Problems: If you constantly feel that your nose, throat, or sinuses are irritated, unchecked asthma may be triggering these problems.
- Acid Reflux: While heartburn is fairly common, it should not lead to breathing problems. If yours does, consider talking to your doctor about asthma.
Be Proactive About Your Health
Respiratory problems should never be ignored or written off as a harmless nuisance. If you do have asthma, developing a relationship with a knowledgeable primary care physician is key. Many treatment options are available. Some can be used only when symptoms arise, and others can be used year-round to keep the condition from causing unwanted flare ups. Don’t wait any longer; Take your free asthma risk assessment and schedule your appointment with LeBauer HealthCare today.