Asthma in America

by Mike Tringale, M.S.M.

Asthma…does the word make you think of people who cough and wheeze all the time?
Don’t people with asthma have to avoid sports and strenuous activities? And, when it comes right
down to it, isn’t it “all in their heads?” If someone in our family has asthma, you challenge
stereotypes like these every day. Learn all you can about asthma. It’s the first step toward
erasing these long-held myths and living a full, active life.

Asthma is a disease in which the airways become blocked or narrowed. These effects are usually
temporary, but they cause shortness of breath, breathing trouble, and other symptoms. If an
asthma episode is severe, a person may need emergency treatment to restore normal breathing.

An estimated 20 million people in the United States have asthma and, despite the availability
of treatments, it remains poorly controlled among many. This health problem is the reason for
nearly 500,000 hospital stays each year. People with asthma can be of any race, age or sex.

Despite the far reaching effects of asthma, much remains to be learned about what causes it and
how to prevent it. Although asthma can cause severe health problems, in most cases treatment can
control it and allow a person to live a normal and active life. Visit the
Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA)
Web site to learn more about the causes, treatments and prevention of asthma, and much more.