If you’re living with someone who has asthma or you have asthma yourself, you’re probably wondering, “can asthma be caused by stress?”, among many other things.
After all, asthma has plenty of triggers, and it’s a different case from person to person. What may be considered an asthma trigger for one person may not be the case for another person. But, stress, in general, is a common asthma trigger among asthma sufferers.
Stress can exacerbate asthma symptoms. What was just once shortness of breaths when doing physical activity can worsen. It’s not unusual for asthma sufferers to feel anxious and panicked, or even frightened, when they feel stressed.
This is most evident during stressful times of the month or the year.
For example, when there are bills coming up, or if the holidays are just around the corner. Essentially, anything that can cause anxiety in a normal person can make asthma symptoms worse for asthma sufferers. As a result, the occasional coughing and wheezing gets worse, which adds yet another reason for asthma sufferers to worry and feel anxious.
In worst cases, an asthma sufferer can find him or herself in a vicious cycle of stress and anxiety resulting into asthma and asthma resulting into stress and anxiety.
How to Manage Stress When You Have Asthma
Stress isn’t something that you can totally eliminate from your life. It’s something everyone has to deal with. But you can learn how to deal with it differently, and for those with asthma, it’s important to find ways to manage stress effectively.
Learning how to relax and ease your thoughts so you don’t feel as stressed can help prevent yourself from suffering yet another asthma attack.
Here are a couple of tips on how you can deal with asthma better.
- Try not to put yourself in stressful situations. Identify potential situations that are considered as asthma triggers for you and avoid them. Learn how to pace yourself, relax, delegate and set priorities so you get the most important things done and still have time to rest.
- Sweat things out. Not only is exercise good for stress, it’s also good for your body. Of course, try not to push yourself too hard. Remember, you have asthma, and if you exercise too much, it’ll end up being counterproductive.
- It’s simple, yet very effective. Getting at least eight hours of sleep at night is essential if you want to minimize asthma attacks. Stick to a bedtime routine and avoid using your bed for anything other than sleeping.
- Eat right. Food with very little nutrition but high calorie value may make you full for a moment, but eating them regularly will leave you feeling tired and with low energy. Try to limit eating unhealthy foods and switch to a healthy diet so your body has all the energy it needs to perform your day to day tasks.
Living with asthma is not easy, and asthma can indeed be caused by stress. However, by educating yourself and learning how to cope with asthma better, it won’t have as much of an effect on your life as it would if you just left it alone.