For millions of Americans, the world is a sneezy, wheezy place, filled with normally harmless substances that their bodies recognize as enemies. Of all the enemies, there's one almost no one can escape: house dust.
When it comes to pet allergies, man's best friends may often be his worst enemies. Numerous times a day, I come across patients who end up being allergic to a favorite animal or are concerned that they may be allergic to their pet. Before you start pointing fingers at the dog for a family member's allergy symptoms, you must be sure not to wrongfully accuse an innocent pet.
Indoor asthma triggers are the contaminants that can set off asthmatic reactions in people who have asthma or breathing problems. According to information from The American Lung Association, it is estimated that 24.6 million Americans have asthma. Typical asthma triggers found in the home relate to dust mites, mold, pet dander, tobacco smoke and combustion appliances. There are many ways to help reduce exposure to these triggers and the first step is the elimination of pollutants if possible.
When you're short of breath, it's hard or uncomfortable for you to take in the oxygen your body needs. You may feel as if you're not getting enough air. Sometimes mild breathing problems are from a stuffy nose or hard exercise. But shortness of breath can also be a sign of a serious disease.
Asthma is a chronic disease that affects your airways. Your airways are tubes that carry air in and out of your lungs. If you have asthma, the inside walls of your airways become sore and swollen. That makes them very sensitive, and they may react strongly to things that you are allergic to or find irritating. When your airways react, they get narrower and your lungs get less air.