The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate as many as 20 million Americans suffer from asthma. Interestingly, not everyone who has asthma is aware they have the condition and not everyone who is aware they have it seeks treatment.
Asthma causes the muscles around the airways in the lungs to become constricted and inflamed, which in turns can cause wheezing, coughing, tightness of the chest, and shortness of breath. If asthma is left untreated, the condition can cause a decrease of lung function. But even when the symptoms are mild or practically nonexistent the inflammation remains, which is why it is important to still undergo treatment.
There are many types of treatment asthmatics try, from diet to medications. One reason for a standard protocol is because doctors don’t really know what causes it. Some believe there is a genetic component because it does seem to run in certain families but to date no consistent genetic profile has been identified.
Others believe there is an environmental component but even if true, why some people develop asthma and others don’t and the mechanism for it remains a mystery. The leading theory is that it’s a combination of inherited predispositions that develops into asthma when the persona is exposed to certain allergens in the environment.
It is well known that certain allergens can trigger an asthma attack as can high humidity, hot weather, very cold temperatures, catching a cold, or coming down with the flu. For some people, exercise can trigger asthma.
There are a number of lifestyle steps that can minimize attacks such as keeping dust in your home to a minimum, changing sheets and bed linens ever week, use air filter, and avoid strong fumes, cigarette smoke, and other irritants. Pet dander can also be a trigger so getting a terrier-type dog that doesn’t shed or at least keeping pets out of the bedroom while sleeping.
While there is no specific diet that can ease asthma in general being healthy is important so eating a well-balanced diet that supplies a variety of vitamins and minerals certainly can’t hurt.
In recent years, researchers have discovered the benefits of chiropractic treatments for asthma. An experiment done in Australia with 420 patients measured concentrations of an immunoglobulin called IgA and the immunosuppressant cortisol and found participants treated with spinal manipulation displayed dramatic increases of IgA and decreases of cortisol even after asthma treatment ceased, suggesting these patients would be able to ward off subsequent asthmatic attacks.
Understand, chiropractic treatments won’t cure for asthma but it may decrease the severity and lessen the frequency of asthma symptoms by improving nerve flow and skeletal motion.
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