What Happens If I Can’t Get My Asthma Under Control?

woman using inhaler outdoors due to asthma

Asthma is one of those lung problems that can be effectively controlled, provided that you follow the right treatment plan. But for certain individuals, asthma can be complicated to manage or control. This might occur if you fail to follow the specific treatment and preventative care program your pulmonologist in Lehi created especially for your case.

Or perhaps because you have severe asthma that cannot be managed using standard therapies. But aside from a higher risk of developing more severe attacks and symptoms, individuals with poorly managed asthma likewise have an increased risk of developing other serious complications, including the following:

More Severe Asthma Attacks

Some individuals who have asthma might experience more severe asthma attacks that could raise their risk of developing more potentially fatal asthma attacks. If you’ve ever experienced an acute attack, you already know how terrifying it could be.

Generally speaking, a severe attack involves warning signs such as severe wheezing or breathlessness, blue fingernails and lips, and difficulty talking. These also include other symptoms that won’t go away even after you’ve used your rescue inhaler.

Compromised Ability to Conduct Daily Tasks

Asthma symptoms could result in you calling in sick for school or work and negatively affect your productivity. They may likewise affect your sleep and prevent you from working out or engaging in social or leisure activities. This will, in turn, increase your risk of developing more serious health problems.

These include conditions like diabetes and heart disease that will negatively impact your overall health.

Airway Remodeling

Unless you are effectively treating your inflammation, it can cause permanent narrowing of your lungs’ bronchial tubes called airway remodeling. This is irreversible and could impact your already compromised breathing. Additionally, some individuals may end up using an oxygen machine in the future.

Increased Risk of GERD or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease

Woman has reflux acids in the garden

A lot of individuals with asthma also have acid reflux or GERD symptoms. But it’s more prevalent in individuals with asthma that’s difficult to control than in individuals with well-controlled asthma. Consult your doctor if you experience symptoms of GERD.

Respiratory Infections

Studies have shown that individuals who use very strong corticosteroid inhalers for managing their asthma have an increased risk of developing respiratory infections such as pneumonia. The reason for this may be due to improperly sanitized inhalers or the corticosteroids’ action of inhibiting certain normal functions of the immune system.

Negative Effects of Specific Medications

Certain side effects of long-term bronchodilator and corticosteroid use are minor and very rare. But inhalers might cause hoarseness or oral fungal infections in some people. With corticosteroids, some individuals might experience adverse effects.

These include increased appetite, water retention, hyperactivity, and sleep disturbances. In the long-term, you also risk developing infections, osteoporosis and high blood sugar.

Fortunately, you can help lower your risk of developing these complications. Generally speaking, working closely with your pulmonologist will help ensure that your asthma treatment and management plan is suited to your needs.

You might need to do some trial and error, but once you have figured out a plan that works, stick with it.

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