If you have wheezing, coughing, tightness in the chest, or trouble breathing, you may have asthma. This chronic disease affects your lungs' ability to move air into and out of the airways. With asthma, the inside walls of the airways are inflamed, so they tend to react strongly to pollen, smoke, dust, or other things you may be allergic to. When the airways react, they become narrow and restrict the amount of air flowing through them.
If your healthcare provider diagnoses you with asthma, he or she will discuss with you important information on what may cause your symptoms to become worse, how to avoid potential triggers, and possible treatment options. Although asthma cannot be cured, it can be controlled through avoiding triggers and, if necessary, taking medication.
(Click Asthma for more information on this chronic lung condition. This article discusses what asthma is and how it can be controlled. Asthma statistics are also included.)