Asthma

Imagine you embark on a trekking trip , on going higher in altitude, you not being able to get enough breath, you are wheezing and gasping but still you can’t get enough air in to move or may be even to speak. That’s what an asthma attack feels like. Now after this you probably have lots of questions not only about what asthma is but also about how you can best manage and cure the symptoms So let’s start with - what is asthma?

Asthma is a disease of the airways – which are the breathing tubes that carry air into our lungs. Sometimes it is harder for a person with asthma to breathe in and out, but at other times their breathing is normal. 

Who develops asthma?

Asthma and allergies are closely linked. Asthma is more common in families with allergies or asthma, but not everyone with asthma has allergies.
Adults of any age can develop asthma, even if they did not have asthma as a child.
Some people have asthma during childhood, but later have very few or no symptoms as adults
Indoor and outdoor pollution (including moulds, gases, chemicals, particles and cigarette smoke) can increase the risk of developing asthma.
Athletes can develop asthma after very intensive training over several years, especially while breathing air that is polluted, cold or dry.

Home Remedy

Symptoms, Precautions & Treatments

प्रतिलोमंयदावायुःस्रोतांसिप्रतिपध्यते। ग्रीवांशिरश्चसंगृह्यश्लेष्मणंसमुदीर्यच॥

करोतिपीनसंतेनरुद्दोघुर्घुरकंतथा। अतीवतीव्रवेगंचश्वासंप्राणप्रपीडकम॥

प्रताम्यतिवेगाच्चकासतेसन्निरुद्धते। प्रमोहंकासमानश्चसगच्छतिमुहुर्मुहुः।

श्लेष्मण्य़ुन्मुच्यमानेतुभृशंभवतिदुःखितः। तसैवचविमोक्षान्तेमुहूर्तंलभतेसुखम्॥

अथास्योद्ध्वंसतेकण्ठःकृच्छ्राच्छक्नोतिभाषितुम॥

नचापिलभ्यतेनिद्रांशयानःश्वासपीडितः। पार्श्वेतस्यवगृह्णातिशयनस्यसमीरणः आसीनोलभतेसौख्ह्यमुष्णंचैवाभिनन्दति॥

उच्छ्रिताक्षोललाटेनस्विद्ध्यताभृशमर्तिमान्। विशुश्कस्योमुहुःश्वासोमुहुष्चैवावधम्यते।

मेघाम्बुशीतप्राग्वातैःश्लेष्मलैश्चविवर्धते।

The most common symptoms of asthma are:

  • Wheezing – a continuous, high-pitched sound coming from the chest while breathing.
  • Shortness of breath – a feeling of not being able to get enough air a feeling of tightness in the chest.
  • Coughing – alongside other symptoms.

Monitoring your symptoms is an important part of controlling your asthma. Keep a diary of your symptoms to see if your asthma is under good control. Take note of

  • Day-time symptoms: how often do you have coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath or tightness in the chest during the day?
  • Rescue inhaler use: how often do you need to use your rescue inhaler to relive your symptoms?
  • Activity level: do you have problems performing normal daily activities, like walking, climbing stairs, or chores?
  • Bronchial asthma is one which can be correlated to Tamakashwasa
  • Pinasa : Increased nasal secretions
  • Grivasirsikasangraha : It contracts the neck and head muscles
  • Gurghurikam : It is a typical sound produced when secretions are obstructed .
  • Atiteevravegashwasa : Increase in heart rate
  • PratamyatiAtivegata: Severe Dyspnoea
  • Kasatesanniruddate : during cough patient withheld breathing for a second
  • Kasatmuhurmuhurpramoham : Repeated coughing and paroxysmal attacks of dyspnoea and may lead to loss of conscious .
  • SleshmaamuchyamaneBhrushamdukhita: Sputum is thick and sticky in nature
  • SlashmanivimokshanteMuhurtamsukham : Once the sputum is expectorated there is momentary relief
  • Kantodwamsa: Hoarseness of voice
  • Kruchratbhasitam: Difficulty in breathing
  • Nachapinidramlabatesayanashwasapiditam : Patient will not be comfortable in any position
  • AsinamLabhatesukham : When patient sits he feels comfortable.
  • Ushnaabhinandate : Feels comfortable with hot foods.
  • Lalatesweda : causes sweating on forehead .
  • MuhurMuhurSwasa : Irritative cough with severe dyspnoea .

An asthma trigger is something, such as an activity or condition that makes your asthma worse or causes an asthma attack. Certain triggers can be identified through testing. Knowing what triggers your asthma and finding ways to avoid or minimise your exposure to it is vital to improving your asthma control. Common triggers include

  • Medical conditions: respiratory infections like colds, flu and sinus infections are the most common causes of asthma flare-ups. Acid reflux that causes heartburn can also trigger symptoms.
  • Certain foods: asthma can be triggered by common food allergies such as peanut and shellfish allergies.
  • Certain medicines: aspirin and some anti-inflammatories and herbal medicines may worsen asthma symptoms. Discuss all medicines you take with your healthcare provider.
  • Weather, pollen and air pollution: high pollen counts, extremes in temperature or humidity, and air pollution from cars, all types of smoke and smog are potential asthma triggers.
  • Environment: dander and saliva from animals with fur or feathers can cause asthma symptoms in some people. Pests (cockroaches, dust mitesand rodents), strong odours and mould can also induce symptoms.
  • Exercise: exercise, especially strenuous forms, may increase asthma symptoms in some people. Talk to your healthcare provider about ways to manage this, as exercise is important to stay healthy and strengthen your heart and lungs.
  • Emotions: strong emotions and stress may trigger an asthma attack.

Causes in Ayurveda

  • Raja – Exposure to Hot
  • Dhoom – exposure to smoke and fumes
  • Vata – Exposure to breeze
  • Sheetastna – living in cold places
  • Atihimaambu – chiiled /frozened water
  • Vyayama – excessive Physical exercise
  • Dourbalya : Severe Debility
  • Marmagata – Injury to vital organs
  • Kshaya : Depletion of body tissues
  • Raktapitta – Hemorrhagic disorders

​There are many things someone with asthma can do to protect their health and minimise their asthma symptoms or attacks, for example: 

  • Do not smoke.
  • Avoid exposure to pollutants that can damage your lungs and trigger an attack.
  • “Allergy-proof” your environment:
  • Cover bedding with dust- or allergy-proof covers;
  • Replace carpets with hard flooring where possible, and vacuum regularly;
  • Use only unscented detergents and cleaning materials;
  • Clean regularly to minimise exposure to dust mites, mould,pests and animal dander;
  • Maintain an optimal humidity;
  • Eliminate tobacco smoke from the home.
  • Prevent infection:
  • Wash your hands regularly;
  • Avoid crowds during cold and flu season;
  • Maintain good oral hygiene to protect you from the germs in your mouth that can lead to infections;
  • Ask your healthcare provider about annual flu vaccinations;
  • Eat a healthy diet rich in antioxidants;
  • Exercise appropriately.
  • Go for regular check-ups.
  • Shukanvarga: Punarnava(boerhavadiffusa) yava(Barley) godhuma(Wheat) shashtikadhanya(The one which is harvested in 60 days) . raktashali(Red rice)
  • ShamiDhanya : kulattha(horse gram)
  • Mamsavarga : Shasha(Rabbit) , Tittira(Vulture)
  • Shakavarga : patola(Pointed gaurd) , vartaka (Brinjal )
  • Phalavarga : Dadima(Pomegrnate) , jambira(A variety of lemon) , draksha (Grapes) , Amalaki(Phyllanthus umbilicus) , Bilva(Aegle Marmelos )
  • Madya varga : sura ( a variety of Madya)
  • Gorasavarga: Aja dugdha(Milk of goat)
  • KritannaVarga : yava (barley), saktu(Flour /parched rice)
  • Aja ghrutam (ghee of goats milk), Purana Ghritam(ghee which I old ) , Madhu (Honey) , Mamsa rasa(Meat soup ) , Ushnajala (Hot water) 
  • MamsaVarga – Matsya (Fish)
  • Shakavarga – sarshapa (seasame seed)
  • Phalavarga –Kanda (Tuber)
  • Jalavarga – Dushitajala ( Contaminated water ) , cold drinks
  • Kritanna – Ruksha anna , pana , shitala and guru padartha( Food which is dry , cold and foods which are heavy to digest )
  • Vegadharana (Suppression of urges)
  • Raktamokshana (Blood letting)
  • Tiktakashyarasapradhanadravya ( Foods which are predominenet of pungent and astringent tastes)
  • Pittakaraahar (Foods which will increase pitta)
  • Krodha (Anger)

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