has sprung, and in addition to welcoming the beauty and warmth
of the season, many folks welcome ó though maybe not with
eager anticipation ó seasonal allergies.
some, allergies and asthma go hand in hand. More than 50
percent of the 20 million Americans with asthma have allergic
asthma, according to the Allergy and Asthma Foundation of
America. Over 2.5 million children under age 18 suffer from
the symptoms of allergic and non-allergic asthma are the same
ó coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath or rapid breathing
and chest tightness. But allergic asthma is triggered by
inhaled allergens such as dust mites, pet dander, pollen or
Jamshed Kanga, chief of the division of pediatric pulmonology
at the University of Kentucky, said "when you look at
Kentucky almost everyone has seasonal allergies."
people may not realize they are suffering from allergic
asthma, he said. Most people associate asthma with wheezing
and asthma attacks but a persistent cough is often the most
prevalent symptom of allergic asthma. Allergic asthma can also
be misdiagnosed as bronchitis, he said.
the cause of breathing trouble in children can also be
difficult. Todayís kids donít run and play as they once
did so what may look at first like asthma may be lack of
conditioning, he said.
parents are concerned about their child, they should talk to
the coach or teacher who can identify whether the child is
having out-of-the-ordinary challenges.
have breathing troubles, which make exercising more difficult,
it can be easy to avoid exercise, said Dr. Tracie Overbeck, of
Allergy Partners of Central Kentucky.
lungs need to be worked just like the rest of your body, she
said. People with allergic asthma need to take a few extra
steps to prepare for exercise. A debilitating asthma attack is
very rare if people take their asthma medication regularly and
take some precautions when exercising, said Kanga.
Overbeck suggested, ask your doctor to help you get a baseline
of your breathing. That way you can note changes in symptoms
as you exercise.
she said, itís important to warm up your lungs just as you
warm up your body. Take 10 minutes to warm up before
exercising, she said, taking slow deep breaths, breathing in
through your nose and out through your mouth.
doctor about prescribing an inhaler for asthma, Kanga said,
and use it about 15 minutes before you begin to exercise.
discovered her asthma in college while playing soccer. But,
she said, asthma "doesnít have to be a limiting
important to continue to take the medicine as prescribed even
when you start to feel better.