Which Air Pollutants Contribute to Asthma?

There are sudden changes of weather and season nowadays. Hence, different types of diseases have evolved. Signs and symptoms are listed to the public. But there are some confusions because of misleading and incomplete information. Asthma is a common condition of the respiratory system characterized by bronchial smooth muscle spasm, airway inflammation, and mucous plugging of the airways. In this article, you’ll learn about one of the most common symptom, Asthma: causes, signs, and management.

WHAT IS ASTHMA?

Asthma is a chronic disease that targets the airways. These airways become inflamed due to foreign particles that leads to narrowing of the bridges resulting to shortness of breathing. Aside from inflammation, there can be mucous that block the airways.There is no age limit for this condition and it can happen as early as childhood. One reason of asthma is because there are some pollutants that stimulate the movement of air inside the body. Childhood asthma may be likely due to genetic influence, while early adulthood may be due to environmental factors. It can be managed with some medications to live a normal life, but as for now, there is really no permanent cure for it.

WHAT ARE THE SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF ASTHMA?

Asthma can happen to any age group and gender. Early detection and management can prolong the life, but mismanagement can be really dangerous. Here are the signs and symptoms of asthma that can help you detect it to yourself and to someone. Symptoms are usually worse at night and in early morning in response to cold air or too much movements. Some people with asthma rarely experience symptoms, usually in response to trigger, whereas others may react frequesntly and readily and experience persistent symptoms.

🫁 Frequent coughing and wheezing – This may be dry or with mucous.

💨 Shortness of breath – This shows breathlesness while talking.

🫁 Chest pain and tightness – There is a heavy pressure on your chest.

💨 Fatigue or feeling tired after minimal movements – Always feeling tired after a slight walk, talk, or movement.

🫁 Colds and allergies ( runny nose, too much sneezing, sore throat ) – Sudden allergy attack.

💨 Difficulty of sleeping with only one pillow – May experience drowning-like while sleeping with one pillow.

🫁 Fast heartbeat – Feeling nervous all the time.

💨 Lips and fingers are turning light to dark blue – This may cause too much oxygen inside that it’s hard to exhale it.

🫁 Drowsiness and fainting – Low oxygen and blood supply may cause nausea, drowsiness, and fainting.

AIR POLLUTANTS THAT TRIGGER ASTHMA

Many environmental factors have been associated with asthma’s development and exacerbation, including allergens, air pollution, and other chemicals. There are two important factors that trigger asthma. The ozone and the pollution. Let’s dissect each.

1. OZONE

Ozone is a gas that is so irritating to the lungs and it is lethal especially in its purest form. How can you determine ozone smell? This gas has a very pungent distinction and like burnt metal smell. It has also chlorine-like odor and detectable by many people at concentrations of as little as in air. Ozone can narrow the airways causing shortness of breathing that can lead to chest pain.

There are two types of ozone and these are the good and bad ozone. Good ozone is the one that protects humans, animals and plants from radiation. Bad ozone takes place near the surface of the Earth due to chemical reactions and human activities that give rise to polluting gases. It has high concentrations on the stratosphere where it absorbs ultraviolet rays that is very damaging to the health. It is a powerful oxidant that has high levels of respiratory hazard and pollutant at ground level.

2. POLLUTION

Pollution of the atmosphere and the air around us is air pollution, and this is becoming more widespread everyday. Air pollution is the presence of substances in the atmosphere that are harmful to the health of humans and other living creatures. There are several main types of air pollution that include smog, acid rain, the greenhouse effect, and holes in the ozone layer. The types are extremely dangerous to the health and could result in serious damage.

💨 Smog is a combination of smoke and fog that causes zero visibility in the eyes. This is a result of heavy chemical fumes in the environment and creates dark fog.

💨 Acid rain is very harmful to health because it contains sulfuric or nitric acid that may damage plants, humans, aquatic resources, and infrastructures. Sulfur can be found on volcanoes and in various industrial processes. Nitrogen are expelled from high temperature combustion and also during thunderstorms by electric discharge.

💨 Ozone depletion is one of the most popular issue worldwide because this is about the “holes” of the ozone layer. This is a result of some infrastructures producing harmful gases that can contribute to this phenomenon.

💨 Greenhouse effect is another import issue in air pollution. Greenhouse effect is the trapping of heat and energy due to the gases that form a barrier in the atmosphere. The gases will let heat in but will not let all heat out. This is similar to what happens in a greenhouse.

HOW TO MANAGE AND AVOID THESE POLLUTANTS?

Low air quality from environmental factors such as traffic pollution or high ozone levels has been associated with both asthma development and severity. Exposure to these or even indoor pollutants has a positive association in both children and adults. Indoor allergens and pollutants may include dust mites, cockroaches, animal or pets fur, perfumes and pesticides, and molds.

  • AIR STERILIZER

Air pollution will be most helped by utilizing air sterilizer. It purifies it by passing the air through nine stages of filters. After that, the air sterilizer provides clean air. If the air sterilizer is used in many places, the air quality will slowly improve. The air sterilizer will work because it was made to clean air. This will take in fine dust, smoke, and chemicals in the air and purifies, cleans it.

  • HUMIDIFIER

This will surely surprise you. Humidifiers can not only be used as a therapy, but also can help cleaning the air. This adds moisture to the air because too much dryness can irritate the throat and can induce cough leading to asthma. There are also available essentials oils with antibacterial property that can surely make the air clean.

  • DEHUMIDIFIER

If there’s a humidifier that minimizing the air dryness, there’s also an appliance that lessen the moisture to air called “dehumidifier”. Too much moisture in air can cause building up of molds and spores that can turn into more serious complications. This can help in areas where humidity is high.

  • ACTIVATED CARBON

Activated carbon or charcoal is the universal antidote in the medical field. It adsorbs particles that can cause lag or delay to certain passageways in the body. It is used to purify liquids and gases because of having small volume of pores that can filter things.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

  1. Is asthma congenital?

There are studies that asthma is hereditary. A person has a greater chance of developing an asthma if the parents also have it. But even though no one in the family has an asthma, you can still trigger it by exposing yourself to some pollutants and allergens.

2. Is there a permanent cure for asthma?

There’s currently no cure for asthma but you can still manage and control it to avoid complications and live a normal life.

3. Are there natural ways to control asthma?

There are natural remedies for asthma. These includes breathing technique, garlic and ginger for anti-inflammatory, honey for cough and colds, omega 3 or fish oil for health liver, heart, and lungs, and lastly, avoid stress. Stress can induce asthma because it can tighten your chest causing difficulty in breathing.

FINAL WORDS

Breathing is the process of gas exchange with the lungs and internal environment. For asthmatic patients, breathing exercises is one of the old way of controling asthma. There are also over-the-counter medications like bronchodilators. These help relieve bronchial spasms that narrow the airways. Stress is also an important factor that triggers asthma. The best way to manage this condition is to stay away from the allergens and pollutants that trigger it. Both human activity and natural processes can generate air pollution that is significant risk factor for a number of pollution-related diseases. Lastly, always maintain cleanliness. Because indoor pollutants may come from the trashes in you house. This may cause virus and bacteria build-up. Stay clean, stay healthy!