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"How can an asthmatic improve breathing during physical activity?"

ZocdocAnswersHow can an asthmatic improve breathing during physical activity?


I am a 21 year old male that has had asthma my entire life. When running, swimming, biking, or doing anything that demands a lot of physical movement - my asthma tends to get out of control and shortness of breath and difficulty of breathing occur. This prevents me from fully enjoying lots of physical activity and gets me left behind. What are some good tips or methods to try to increase my performance and live a better physical life?


People with asthma having varying symptoms related to their illness. Some are affected only rarely, some only with exercise- or cold-induced symptoms, and others with more severe disease are affected with daily breathing problems such as wheeze and cough. Medications should be titrated according to the frequency and severity of symptoms, prescribed in a step-wise manner. Most asthmatics use at least a short-acting bronchodilator (a medication that opens up the airways, such as albuterol) for acute symptoms of difficulty breathing. If taken before an athletic event, it may help prevent the onset of your symptoms. If this does not do the job, you should talk with your doctor about other medications that can be used on days when you are going to be physically active. These medications may including inhaled steroids and/or long-acting bronchodilators.

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