Asthma is a chronic potentially life-threatening airway disease where inflammation in the lungs causes narrow, swollen airways, increased mucus and shortness of breath, chest tightening, coughing and a characteristic wheeze. While most asthma starts in childhood, experts say that both allergies and asthma can crop up at any age.
Types of asthma:
Asthma can be triggered by food, dust, mold and even cold air. Treatment options are just as varied.
There are many different types of asthma each triggered by various culprits and no one treatment fits all. Treatment depends on the type of asthma, allergens.
Here, the different types:
The six different types of asthma are: allergic (most common); occupational (work associated); steroid resistant (severe asthma); drug related; exercise induced and asthma related to obesity. Although they are separate they can work together to make asthma worse. Exposure to dust mites can impact on all of these.
1. Allergic Asthma:
Allergic asthma is the most common form of the disease and both storage and house dust mites are known worldwide as a cause of allergy symptoms.
2. Occupational Asthma:
Occupational Asthma can come from a wide range of substances, but can also be caused by exposure to dust mites at work. Patients at risk can be domestic cleaners, visiting health care workers, veterinary staff or field and farm workers handling mite-infested animals, hay or crops.
3. Steroid Resistant Asthma:
Steroid resistant Asthma patients have been shown to have a form of asthma that can be driven by neutrophil immune reactions, which are known to be less responsive to steroid treatments. New research indicates that house dust mites can trigger a neutrophil, as well as the 'normal' allergic eosinophil inflammatory reaction. If proven correct this makes mites 'double trouble' for the vulnerable steroid-resistant asthma patient.
4. Drug related Asthma:
Drug related asthma mainly refers to aspirin or NSAID (non steroidal anti-inflammatory) medication to relieve pain. The patients are not allergic to the drug itself, but vulnerable to the effect it has on the body. In some patients, NSAID drugs can increase the absorption mechanism of the gut, resulting in an increased uptake of environmental elements, including allergens. Dust mite-contaminated wheat or corn flour in baked food has been blamed for NSAID related severe allergic events in patients already allergic to mites.
5. Exercise induced Asthma:
Exercise induced asthma (EIA). The tubes that bring air into and out of lungs narrow with exercise. The temperature or quality of the air breathed in during exercise can cause symptoms of asthma in people not otherwise diagnosed with asthma. The symptoms are wheezing, coughing or shortness of breath during or about 20 minutes following exercise. Preparations, such as a warm-up routine before exercise, can reduce EIA. Patients already diagnosed with other forms of asthma need to take extra care or their asthma can get worse. This includes an active allergy to dust mite exposure.
6. Obesity Asthma:
Obesity combined with atrophy (the ability to easily make IgE) or allergy is associated with symptoms of asthma. Dust mites can induce atrophy (which can lead to allergy) and trigger allergic immune responses including asthma.
Home Remedies for Asthma:
There are many medical treatments for asthma. Some simple natural remedies can also provide relief from symptoms.
Here are the top 5 home remedies for asthma.
Ginger is a well-known natural treatment for various ailments including asthma. Researchers have found that it can help reduce airway inflammation and inhibit airway contraction.
Mix equal quantities of ginger juice, pomegranate juice and honey. Consume one tablespoon of this mixture two or three times a day.
1. Alternatively, you can mix one teaspoon of ground ginger in one and half cups of water and take one tablespoon of this mixture at bedtime.
2. Cut one inch of ginger into small pieces and add it to a pot of boiling water. Let it steep for five minutes, allow it to cool down and then drink it.
3. To detoxify your lungs, prepare a fenugreek decoction by boiling one tablespoon of fenugreek seeds in a cup of water and mixing one teaspoon each of ginger juice and honey in it. Drink this solution every morning and evening.
4. You can also eat raw ginger mixed with salt.
2. Mustard Oil:
When having an asthma attack, massaging with mustard oil can help clear the respiratory passages and restore normal breathing.
- Heat some mustard oil with a little camphor.
- Transfer it in a bowl and when it is comfortably warm, gently rub it on the chest and upper back and massage.
- Do this several times a day until the symptoms subside.
The nutritional properties of figs promote respiratory health and help drain phlegm and alleviate breathing difficulties.
- Wash three dried figs and soak them in a cup of water overnight.
- In the morning, eat the soaked figs and drink the fig water on an empty stomach.
Continue this home treatment for a couple of months.
The following garlic remedy can help clear congestion in your lungs during the early stages of asthma.
- Boil two or three cloves in one-quarter cup of milk.
- Allow it to cool to room temperature and then drink it.
The caffeine in regular coffee can help control asthma attacks because it acts as a bronchodilator. Hot coffee helps relax and clear the airways to help you to breathe easier. The stronger the coffee, the better the result.
But try not to drink more than three cups of black coffee in a day. If you do not like coffee, you can opt for a cup of hot black tea. Do not use caffeine as a regular treatment though.
6. Eucalyptus Oil:
Pure eucalyptus oil is an effective treatment for asthma symptoms because of its decongestant properties. Research indicates that it has a chemical called eucalyptol which can help break up mucus.
- Just put a few drops of eucalyptus oil on a paper towel and keep it by your head when sleeping so that you breathe in the aroma.
- You can also put two to three drops of eucalyptus oil in a pot of boiling water and breathe in the steam. Try to take deep breaths for faster results.