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World Asthma Day (WAD) observed by the Global Initiative for Asthma

World Asthma Day (WAD) observed by the Global Initiative for Asthma

world asthma day

World Asthma Day (WAD) (May 2, 2023) is organized by the , (GINA) (www.ginasthma.org) to raise awareness about asthma.

Dr R. Jayakumar MBBS, MD(Pulmonology), DNB(Respiratory Diseases), MRCP(UK), WSS Certified Sleep Physician Consultant Pulmonologist & Sleep Specialist PSG Hospitals, Coimbatore

Dr R. Jayakumar, MBBS, MD(Pulmonology), DNB(Respiratory Diseases), MRCP(UK), WSS Certified Sleep Physician, PSG Hospitals, Coimbatore writes on World Ashtma Day 2023.

The majority of the burden of asthma morbidity and mortality occurs in low and middle income countries.

GINA has chosen “Asthma care for All” as the theme for the 2023 World Asthma Day.

The Asthma care for All message promotes the development and implementation of effective asthma management programs in all resource countries.

You cannot cure asthma but you can control asthma like other diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure etc.. People with asthma can have normal, active lives when they learn to control their asthma. When your asthma is under control:

• You can work, play, and go to school.

• You can sleep well at night.

• You can avoid most asthma attacks.

Asthma does not have to limit your life. All over the world, many people have asthma. People with asthma can have trouble breathing.

The common asthma symptoms are cough especially at night and early morning associated with chest tightness and wheezing. People with asthma may wake up at night because of coughing or trouble breathing. Some patients especially children may have limitation of activity. They have asthma symptoms and asthma attacks that come and go. Most of asthma attacks are mild. But asthma attacks can get very serious and people can die from a bad asthma attack especially if not on regular treatment and follow up.

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You can get asthma at any age. Asthma is not a contagious disease. You cannot catch asthma from other people. Asthma is not caused by one single factor. There are different types of asthma. In some types of asthma, several family members may have asthma, but this is not seen in some other types of asthma.

Asthma is a disease of airways that carry air to the lungs. Airways get smaller and smaller like branches of a tree. When asthma is under control, the airways are clear and air flows easily in and out. When asthma is not under control these airways become narrowed due to thickening of airway walls and also blocked by thick mucous.

Don’t take self-medications for asthma. Consult your family doctor or a pulmonologist for diagnosis & safe management of asthma so that you can lead a normal life.  Your doctor may advice lung function tests and blood tests for assessing your asthma.

  • There are few important steps to follow to keep your asthma under control.
  • Make sure you know how to use your inhaler correctly, and use it as often as the doctor says.
    Go to the doctor at least once a year for check-ups, or right away if you have had an asthma attack or flare up of symptoms. Go even when you feel fine and have no breathing problems.
  • Ask for a written asthma action plan so you will know when your asthma is getting worse and how to respond.
  • Stay away from triggers that start your asthma attacks (eg. Dust, pets, pollens or food allergens)

Most of the asthma people need two kinds of medicine.

  • Preventive medicines (“controllers”) protect the lungs & keep asthma attacks from starting.
  • Quick-relief medicines (“relievers”) are used to relieve asthma symptoms when they occur.

There are famous people who have been very successful in their field despite having asthma. It is inspiring to see that their asthma has not prevented them from achieving their goals.

Dr R. Jayakumar, MBBS, MD(Pulmonology), DNB(Respiratory Diseases), MRCP(UK), WSS Certified Sleep Physician, Consultant Pulmonologist & Sleep Specialist of PSG Hospitals, Coimbatore.

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