Asthma affects people differently; from the symptoms they experience to the triggers that bring on an attack.
Resultantly, there are several sub-conditions that more closely identify these distinctions.
In this article, we’ll discuss these and what measures you can take to treat and prevent them where possible.
Exercise-induced asthma (EIA)
Exercised-induced asthma is brought on by physical exertion and causes a tight chest, shortness of breath and coughing.
Some people may only experience asthma symptoms after taking part in exercise, or find that exercising results in exacerbated symptoms. This may be diagnosed as exercise-induced asthma.
You may think that this type of asthma diagnosis means that you cannot partake in regular physical activity, however, exercise is actually encouraged to try and relieve symptoms and build better lung capacity.
In order to control symptoms you may have to remember to warm up and take your preventer inhaler prior to exercising.
If you develop asthma symptoms when you are at your workplace then you might have occupational asthma. Symptoms include difficulty breathing, wheezing or a tight chest.
There are particular jobs that have a higher risk of occupational asthma developing in their employees due to certain dusts, chemicals and fumes. These jobs might include roles working in a bakery, in healthcare, in metalworks, on a farm, as a cleaner, or as a hairdresser.
The body sometimes develops an allergy to something because it has been exposed to large amounts of the substance for long periods of time.
This type of asthma accounts for the highest percentage of those receiving an asthma diagnosis as an adult. It can lead to a large portion of those who have received a diagnosis having to take time off work or even find a new job.
Difficult to control
Difficult to control asthma and severe asthma are two separate conditions that affect a small number of asthmatics.
Those people living with difficult to control asthma might regularly struggle to breathe and also experience dangerous asthma attacks more frequently.
The condition is usually caused by the presence of another chronic illness, smoking or an ineffective asthma control routine. It can be better managed with the right level of support and expertise.
Severe asthma has similar symptoms to difficult to control asthma but requires more specialist input and complex treatment often resulting in more time spent in a hospital setting.
This condition means that regular asthma treatments such as steroids do not work as well as they do for non-severe asthmatics. More intense treatments may be required such as the use of nebulisers, physiotherapy and psychology.
You may have seasonal asthma if you only experience your symptoms at particular times of the year. This is usually due to an allergic reaction to a seasonal change such as the presence of pollen or mould.
In order for each individual to better control their asthma they should try and identify their own seasonal triggers.
Also known as nighttime asthma, this condition can disrupt sleep patterns and leave asthmatics feeling tired and irritable.
People with this condition experience exacerbated symptoms when they try to go to sleep.
The exact reason behind this is not known but it is thought to be linked to lying in a reclined position and exposure to dust and cooler air. The use of long-acting preventative treatment such as inhalers throughout the day can limit the chances of a nocturnal asthma attack occurring.
Aspirin-induced asthma (AIA)
Aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can cause an asthmatic reaction in some people.
This often presents itself through particular nasal symptoms including rhinitis and nasal polyps. A diagnosis of AIA may be given if aspirin or another NSAID has been ingested and the mucus lining of the nose shows inflammation alongside increased asthma attacks.