Facts about asthma


Asthma is a narrowing of the breathing tubes called bronchii. It’s often caused by allergies, and may be triggered by exercise. But if the asthma kept under control, your child will be able to live a normal life, including participating in sport and all other activities. The most common treatment is an inhaler,usually containing a steroid component as well as something to open the airways.

What causes asthma?

  • Swelling of the lining of the bronchii.
  • Increased sticky mucous in the airways.
  • The swelling and increased secretions are called inflammation.
  • Muscles going into spasm when there’s inflammation.
  • When the bronchii become too narrow, or are partially obstructed due to inflammation and spasm, the typical symptoms of asthma will develop.

These symptoms are:

·Coughing which often occurs more frequently with activity and at night. This can be dry or wet and is persistent or recurrent.

·Wheezing which is a whistling noise in the chest.

·Tightness of the chest causing difficulty in breathing.

·Shortness of breath, especially after exercise.

Some asthma facts

  • Asthma is one of the most common respiratory diseases in the world today.
  • It affects one in 10 children (10%) and one in 20 adults (5%).
  • It occurs for the first time at any age, even in adulthood, although it usually begins before the age of 5.
  • A few children affected will "outgrow" asthma during their teenage years although it usually persists if contracted in adulthood.
  • It tends to run in families, as do related allergic conditions, such as hay fever and eczema.
  • If the asthma is kept under control, those affected will be able to live normal lives enjoying full involvement in sport and all other activities.
We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
What are your thoughts on the possibility of having permanent Stage 2 or 3 load shedding?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
I'll take that over constant schedule changes
13% - 1614 votes
Why are we normalising Eskom’s mess?
72% - 8899 votes
I've already found alternative ways of powering my home/business
15% - 1814 votes
Rand - Dollar
Rand - Pound
Rand - Euro
Rand - Aus dollar
Rand - Yen
Brent Crude
Top 40
All Share
Resource 10
Industrial 25
Financial 15
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.