With the changing seasons, the risk of catching seasonal illnesses becomes high. Seasonal asthma is a type of allergic asthma where an individual experiences asthma flare-ups due to exposure to various allergens as per the season. There are different types and patterns of asthma. However, in this blog, the focus will be on discussing seasonal asthma, seasonal asthma symptoms, how seasonal asthma is diagnosed, and potential seasonal asthma treatments.
Asthma is a chronic (ongoing) disorder that affects your airways and causes them to swell, tighten, and generate mucus, which narrows them and makes breathing more difficult. This frequently occurs as a result of breathing in an allergen in the air that causes your airways to narrow.
What Is Seasonal Asthma?
As discussed above, seasonal asthma is a type of asthma that is triggered by seasonal allergens that appear in different seasons and at different times. There is a complex interchange between allergies and asthma that will be discussed later in the blog.
Causes Of This Condition
There are different allergens and irritants that may cause seasonal asthma flare-ups. Irritants including weather may also trigger asthma symptoms. Other common causes of asthma include:
Pollen and Ragweed:
Pollens are the grains of flowering plants, trees, etc. that can cause allergic symptoms. Similarly, ragweed is a plant whose pollen triggers an allergic reaction.
Both indoors and outside, mold (fungus) can be discovered. Allergies to mold, including mildew, are brought on by breathing in spores, which are microscopic mold-reproductive particles. Spores may float through the air with ease. They have the potential to cause allergic reactions or seasonal asthma symptoms if inhaled.
Outdoors, cold and/or dry air can cause airway narrowing and asthma symptoms. This is particularly a concern if you are exercising outside. You’re more likely to spend more time indoors in the winter because of the colder, harsher weather that is typical of the season. This may expose you to more indoor allergens, such as dust mites, mold, pet dander, and bug droppings, which can exacerbate seasonal asthma symptoms or trigger allergic reactions.
At humidity levels greater than 50%, the growth of molds and dust mites can be observed. However, if it is less than 30%, it results in dry nasal passages and skin and irritates the airways. All of this exacerbates seasonal asthma symptoms.
Seasonal Asthma Symptoms
Some of the striking symptoms of this type of asthma are:
- Shortness of breath,
- Chest tightness, and
- Chest pain.
How Is Seasonal Asthma Diagnosed?
Some of the tests that are conducted to diagnose this type of asthma are:
- FeNO test: It measures the level of nitric oxide while you breathe, which indicates the sign of inflammation in the lungs.
- Spirometry: It checks the ability of your lungs to hold air and breathe.
- Peak Flow Test: It tests how fast one can breathe out. It is done repeatedly with intervals to see if there is any change in the pattern.
Can Seasonal Asthma Go Away?
It is one of the most frequently asked questions. Unfortunately, seasonal asthma is one of those conditions that are irreversible. Once developed, it can not be reversed or go away. It is a chronic respiratory condition, with symptoms that vary from person to person.
What Season Is Worse For Asthma?
For asthmatics, winter is the most challenging season. The shift in winds and cold, dry weather makes it harder for them to breathe and cope with the changing season. Dry winds trigger flare-ups and encourage the buildup of mucus and make it worse for the affected individuals. The winter season calls for extra effort from people with seasonal asthma.
Seasonal Asthma Treatment
Reducing your exposure to triggers plays an important role in managing your seasonal asthma symptoms. It is all about proactively managing your symptoms. The diagnosis starts with a physical examination and history where your doctor asks you about your symptoms and triggers. After the identification, your doctor makes a treatment plan which may include options such as medications and inhalers.
Some of the seasonal asthma treatment options available are:
- Inhaled corticosteroids: Steroids inhaled suppress airway inflammation. They effectively manage allergic asthma when taken regularly, decreasing symptoms and frequently preventing flare-ups before they occur.
- Multipurpose inhaler: Corticosteroids and long-acting beta-agonists, which lessen edema and keep airways open, are both components of asthma combination inhalers.
- Rescue (rapid relief) drugs: If you experience an asthma attack, your doctor may recommend one of several different types of drugs for you to take. They consist of oral corticosteroids and inhaled bronchodilators, where necessary.
- Mast cell stabilizer: Another type of medication used to stop allergic reactions is mast cell stabilization medication.
- Immunotherapy: When allergic asthma is mild to severe, allergy injections may be advised. They function by gradually lessening the immune system’s sensitivity to allergens.
- Modifier for leukotriene: These help in combating breathing issues due to allergies, asthma, or COPD.
Additional tests include chest X-rays, CT scan of sinuses and chest, blood tests, and phlegm examination to check for signs of viral or bacterial infections. These tests are of great help in the diagnosis of asthma.
Role Of Revive Research Institute
Revive Research Institute is conducting a study to determine whether a novel study drug might be able to assist control your symptoms more effectively than other asthma drugs that are already on the market and have received approval. The aim is to educate people regarding their conditions and make novel treatment options accessible.
Allergy asthma is another name for seasonal asthma. Allergens and other triggers that appear at particular times of the year are what causes this condition. This condition can make it challenging to perform even routine tasks therefore, it is vital to know your symptoms to prevent complications and live a better, more productive life.