SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - Approximately 7.6% of the US Population has some form of asthma. Regionally, nearly 70,000 people in the 20-county WTOC viewing area suffer from this chronic condition. For many asthmatics, physical activity can trigger an attack. This event is known as exercise-induced asthma. For most people, however, asthma is an allergic disease. As with other allergies, those with a family history of the condition are more likely to develop it.
An allergic asthmatic reaction is triggered by inhaling an airborne allergen such as dust mites, pollen, pet dander, or mold. When the substance is inhaled, it sets off an immune system response, the result of which is inflamed airwaves that causes coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath.
Allergic asthma is commonly a lifelong disease; some kids do "outgrow" it. It can be treated and kept at bay but never goes away. Because asthma can be life-threatening, if a person suspects that he has it, he should seek a physician's evaluation.
The key to asthma management is good prevention. If a physician confirms that you have allergic asthma, he will put you on an appropriate maintenance regime to prevent attacks, ER visits, and potential hospitalizations.