Which diseases are not curable, but controllable

Asthma education is important

02.05.2011

This year's World Asthma Day on May 3rd runs under the motto "You can control your asthma" - you can control your asthma. In order to be able to live well with asthma, it is necessary to provide those affected with detailed information about the causes, prevention and treatment options for their illness, which they can receive in a special asthma training course under competent guidance.

Every tenth child suffers from bronchial asthma. With a share of 60 percent, boys are affected significantly more often than girls. The health insurance company DAK announced this on the occasion of World Asthma Day on May 3rd with reference to the data of its insured persons. In adulthood, on the other hand, the tide turns: Then more women fall ill than men. There is no scientific explanation for this. "In childhood, the cause of asthma is usually an allergy to one or more substances," explains DAK doctor Elisabeth Thomas. Avoiding pet hair, preservatives, and fragrances is relatively easy. However, it is more difficult with pollen or house dust mites, as they are found almost everywhere. In these cases, Elisabeth Thomas advises only ventilating the apartment late in the evening when the pollen count is low, always wiping the dust with a damp cloth and avoiding carpets and curtains in the children's room. "Even cuddly toys are real dust catchers and have no place in the cot." Also important: not to expose children to additional stimuli such as cigarette smoke or exhaust fumes.

Exercise despite asthma
Non-allergic triggers are primarily physical or emotional stress such as stress, time pressure and pressure to perform, which can also lead to asthma attacks. The best prevention against so-called exercise or exertion asthma is exercise. "So that affected children develop a feeling for their individual resilience, they should be active in sports," advises Thomas. "However, the sport must be suitable and the load limit must not be exceeded."

Not curable, but mostly easy to control
There is no cure for asthma, but in most cases the symptoms can be easily controlled with today's treatment options. This requires the right diagnosis, the right treatment and good training for those affected. The better those affected know and can deal with their asthma, the better they can control their disease. Patients with asthma should measure their peak flow in the morning and in the evening with a simple measuring device, which shows whether and how much the bronchi are narrowed. If people have normal lung function, experience no symptoms, can exercise, and do whatever activities they want, their asthma is well controlled.

Regular medication is important
“Children with asthma are more susceptible to infections of the respiratory tract, but with the right medication they can take part in social and physical activities normally,” explains Thomas. However, permanent therapy is important. “Asthma medication should be taken regularly, even if no symptoms are visible at times. But then in a reduced amount as prophylaxis. "

Hotline for World Asthma Day on May 3rd
Like many clinics (see clinic search at www.lungenaerzte-im-netz.de, keyword: "asthma training") and special asthma centers for children (such as the CJD Berchtesgaden) in Germany, health insurance companies also offer special behavioral asthma training courses in which children can learn to cope with their illness in everyday life, to take their medication correctly, to avoid asthma triggers and to do real sports. On the occasion of World Asthma Day on May 3, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., medical professionals will answer questions on this subject by calling 0180-1000741 (3.9 cents / min from the Deutsche Telekom landline network; maximum 42 cents / min for calls from cellular networks).