Women: Causes and Symptoms of Asthma

What is asthma?

Asthma is a chronic lung disease that affects the bronchial tubes. Your bronchial tubes bring air into and out of your lungs. Your lungs take in oxygen when you breathe. The oxygen takes a trip through your blood stream to all parts of your body.

In people who have asthma, the lungs and walls of the bronchial tubes become swollen and oversensitive. When individuals with asthma breathe in “asthma triggers,” such as smoke, air contamination, cold air, mold, or chemicals, the bronchial tubes tighten in reaction.

Who gets asthma?

Before age 15, asthma impacts more young boys than women. After age 15, asthma is more common among girls and women than amongst young boys and males.

Scientists believe the hormonal agents estrogen and progesterone may impact women’s respiratory tracts. Changing hormonal agent levels throughout the menstrual cycle and during pregnancy and menopause might affect air passages in ladies with asthma.1

Who gets asthma

Some females are more at threat for asthma:

African-American and Puerto Rican ladies. Asthma is more likely to impact Puerto Rican and African-American women than females of other racial and ethnic groups.2
•  Females who live in cities, especially in low-income areas. Air contamination, indoor irritants (such as cockroaches), and tobacco smoke are more common in urban, low-income areas.3

How does asthma affect women?

Studies show that asthma may impact ladies in a different way than guys.4

• Ladies might experience more asthma signs than males do. Women with asthma go to the healthcare facility for asthma treatment regularly and utilize more quick-relief or “rescue” medications than guys with asthma do.1.
• Ladies with asthma report more difficulty sleeping and more stress and anxiety than guys with asthma do.1
• Women’s lungs are smaller than men’s. This might make women more conscious asthma triggers and make it harder for females to breathe throughout an asthma attack.4

What are the symptoms of asthma?

Asthma symptoms include:

• Wheezing
• Coughing
• Shortness of breath
• Chest tightness

You might have just one or 2 of these signs, or you may get all of them. You may also get asthma symptoms only at night or in winter. Or you may get asthma signs after direct exposure to an allergen or other trigger, or when you have a cold or are exercising.

How is asthma identified?

Many individuals establish asthma throughout childhood, however asthma can take place at any age. Asthma can be challenging to identify. Asthma symptoms can be similar to those of other conditions, such as persistent obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), pneumonia, bronchitis, stress and anxiety conditions, and heart disease.

To identify asthma, your doctor or nurse may:

• Inquire about your symptoms and what appears to activate them
• Ask about your health history
• Do a physical exam
• Inquire about your day-to-day habits
• Ask what types of irritants or irritants might be in your workplace or home that might activate your asthma symptoms


Your physician or nurse may also do tests consisting of:

Spirometry. A device called a spirometer determines just how much air you can breathe. It likewise determines how quickly you can blow air out. Your physician or nurse may offer you medications and then retest you to see if the outcomes are better after you take the medications.
Bronchoprovocation. Your medical professional or nurse tests your lung function utilizing spirometry. Throughout the test, you will put tension on your lungs by working out or breathing in increasing doses of a special chemical or cold air.

Your doctor or nurse might wish to evaluate for other problems that may be triggering your symptoms. These include sleep apnea, singing cable problems, or stomach acid supporting into the throat.

How is asthma treated?

Asthma is a persistent disease. This means that it can be treated however not cured. However, some people are able to manage asthma so that symptoms do not take place again or happen seldom.

You can take actions to control asthma and prevent issues by:.

• Working with your doctor or nurse to set up and follow a personal asthma action plan.
• Taking medications as your doctor or nurse prescribes them for you.
• Remaining away from your asthma triggers.
• Getting a flu shot. The influenza can be extremely hazardous for women with asthma.

What is an asthma action strategy?

Your physician or nurse will deal with you to come up with an action plan for treating your asthma. The action plan consists of:

• What medications to take.
• When to take your medications.
• How to monitor your asthma, such as with an unique tool called a “peak circulation meter,” which measures how well air is draining of your lungs.
• Ways to remain away from asthma activates.
• When to call your doctor or nurse or go to the emergency clinic.

What kinds of medicines treat asthma?

Asthma medicines work by opening the lung respiratory tracts or by decreasing the swelling in the lungs. Some asthma medications are tablets, however many come from an inhaler (you breathe the medicine in).

Asthma medicines fall under two groups: long-lasting control medications and quick-relief or “rescue” medicines.

Long-lasting control medications assist you have fewer and less extreme asthma attacks. But they do not work to stop an asthma attack that has currently begun. You take long-lasting control medicines every day to ease swelling and help open the airways.

Breathed in corticosteroids assist lower swelling in the lungs so that you are less most likely to have an asthma attack. They will most likely be the first type of long-lasting asthma control medication your doctor will provide you.

Quick-relief medications consist of short-acting inhaled beta agonists like albuterol. Quick-relief medicines typically make your signs go away within minutes.

My recommendation: Breathe to Heal: Break Free From Asthma


    1. Zein, J.G., Erzurum, S.C. (2015). Asthma is Different in Women. Current Allergy and Asthma Reports; 15(6): 28.
    2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2017). 2015 National Health Interview Survey Data. Table 4-1.
    3. Forno, E., Celedón, J.C. (2009). Asthma and Ethnic Minorities: Socioeconomic Status and Beyond. Current Opinion in Allergy and Clinical Immunology; 9(2): 154–160.
    4. Pignataroa, F.S., Bonini, M., Forgione, A., Melandri, S., Usmani, O.S. (2017). Asthma and gender: The female lung(link is external). Pharmacological Research; 119: 384–390.

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