An asthma attack is commonly described as an increased level of asthma symptoms, caused by muscles tightening in the airways. If you are having an asthma attack, the lining of your airways are becoming swollen or inflamed. More mucus is being produced as well and these lead to an asthma attack where it becomes difficult to breathe.
There may be various symptoms that you will experience during an asthma attack. This includes coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath, as well as finding it difficult to perform normal activities throughout the day.
The symptoms can vary from person to person and will depend on how restricted the airways are and how thick the mucus is. Some people have rapid breathing or chest pain while others have difficulty talking, have a pale and sweaty face, and may even experience blue lips and fingernails.
Many people will go through extended periods without having an asthma attack or exhibiting any symptoms. There may be various asthma triggers that will cause a periodic worsening of the symptoms. The triggers can include:
- Dust mites
- Household irritants
- Secondhand tobacco smoke
Some people may also go through an asthma attack by way of exercise, pushing themselves too hard. This is known as asthma that is exercise-induced.
There are mild asthma attacks, which are considered more common than the severe ones. The airways will typically open up within a few minutes and may take a few hours to open up following treatment. A severe attack will last longer and often require immediate medical attention. It is important for people to know the symptoms of an asthma attack to be able to prevent severe episodes from occurring and to ensure that asthma can be controlled effectively.
If you suffer from asthma, it is important to be able to recognize the symptoms so that you can administer treatment quickly. You should have a treatment plan worked out with your doctor ahead of time. This allows you to know what needs to be done the moment you see a symptom arising to avoid the asthma attack from becoming more severe than it should.
It is sometimes necessary to call 911 in the event of an asthma attack, depending on the severity. Everyone should be familiar with the symptoms to be able to know an attack when they see it on themselves as well as when they see it with someone else to be able to get proper help.