It may be surprising to hear, but adults can indeed develop asthma. Asthma is a chronic condition of the lungs that causes difficulty breathing due to inflammation and constriction of the airways. Adult-onset asthma occurs when you develop asthma symptoms later in life rather than as a child.
What is the Difference Between Adult Onset Asthma and Childhood Asthma?
Childhood asthma typically begins in infancy or early childhood. It is often caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors, such as exposure to allergens or certain illnesses.
Adult-onset asthma has the same symptoms but may develop later in life due to age-related changes in the lungs and airways. In addition, adult-onset asthma typically has persistent symptoms that may require daily medication to manage, whereas childhood asthma often presents with intermittent symptoms when exposed to allergens or respiratory infections.
What are the Symptoms of Asthma?
Symptoms of asthma include wheezing, coughing, chest tightness, and shortness of breath. While it is more common for children to develop asthma, adults are also at risk. If you are experiencing any of the aforementioned symptoms, it is important to seek asthma treatment.
What Can Trigger Asthma?
Asthma can be triggered by various factors like allergens, irritants such as smoke or dust, and exercise-induced asthma (EIA). Allergens are substances that cause an allergic reaction in your body.
Common allergens that can trigger asthma include pollen, mold, dust mites, animal dander, and cockroaches. Irritants like tobacco smoke, chemical fumes, or outdoor air pollution can also cause asthma symptoms to flare up. Exercise-induced asthma is triggered by vigorous physical activity, and it may be the only symptom of asthma that you experience.
What Can Cause Adults to Develop Asthma?
There are several possible factors that can lead to the development of adult-onset asthma. These include:
• Age-related changes in the lungs and airways
• Certain medications or supplements
• Secondary exposure to smoke, dust, mold, or other substances
Anyone can experience asthma, but it is more common in certain people. If you have allergies or a family history of asthma, you’re at an increased risk of developing the condition. Also, if you are obese or had asthma as a child, you are at a higher risk. Research has also shown that women over the age of 20 are more likely to develop asthma. Women can develop asthma as a result of hormonal fluctuations. Certain illnesses, infections, and viruses may also bring on asthma in adults.
What Should I Do If I Suspect I Have Asthma?
If you suspect you may have developed asthma as an adult, it is important to talk to your healthcare provider. Your doctor can help you determine whether or not you are dealing with this condition and recommend the right treatment plan for your needs. In some cases, medication may be necessary to control symptoms.
If it is determined that you are suffering from asthma, Pittsburgh patients can seek asthma treatments at Allergy & Clinical Immunology Associates to diagnose and create a plan for their symptoms. Contact us today to learn more!