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HHS HealthBeat (July 23, 2013)

The realities of asthma

HHS HealthBeat: Three inhalers alongside one another.

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Prevent Asthma Attacks

From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Nicholas Garlow with HHS HealthBeat.

Don’t have asthma? Try this. Take a straw. Put it in your mouth, hold your nose, and try to breathe through it. Now try it quickly, as if you were exercising. That’s how Dr. James Kiley describes symptoms someone has when they experience asthma. Dr. Kiley is a lung diseases expert at the National Institutes of Health. He describes flare ups. 

“There are difficulties breathing during certain times of the year, and particularly in the summer months when there are triggers that trip off symptoms that lead to asthma.”

Some of the symptoms include chest tightness, coughing, and shortness of breath. It affects over 25 million people in the US, including 7 million children. 

But there are ways to avoid these flare ups—and to treat them properly so they don’t become serious.

Learn more at

HHS HealthBeat is production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Nicholas Garlow.

Last revised: July 23, 2013