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21-May-14 11:45 AM  CST  

May 2014: Remembering Asthma Awareness Month 

May is full of beautiful things, sun, fun, and flowers are in bloom. With the beauty of spring comes seasonal allergies.  Seasonal allergies can wreck havoc on asthma sufferers and make their lives miserable. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 25.5 million Americans are living with asthma and 7 million are children. May is Asthma Awareness Month and it is important to remember those who suffer from this condition.

            Asthma is a disease that affects the lungs and causes repeated episodes of wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness, and coughing. Many people suffer from exertion asthma of all ages. Exertion asthma can affect a person’s ability to do even routine tasks such as housework, exercising, or walking long distances.

            Asthma cannot be cured, but can be controlled with inhalers and medication in pill form as well. The cause of asthma is not known, but people can live full and healthy lives if their condition is taken care of properly. Some common triggers of asthma are allergy flare ups, cigarette smoke, household pets, dust mites, mold, cockroaches, pests, nitrogen dioxide, chemical irritants, outdoor pollen, outdoor pollution, and wood smoke.

            Identifying asthma triggers can help patients avoid full-blown asthma attacks. Some doctors suggest taking a pill form of an asthma medication so patients will only need a rescue inhaler in case of an emergency attack. It is important for patients to take their medication as prescribed and also keep their asthma medication on hand. This includes being up to date on refills.

            Pharmacy technicians may go to the US Environmental Protection Agency web site to learn more about asthma by going to or they may visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention web site by going to



1. “CDC Features – May Is Asthma Awareness Month.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Web. Date of Access: 19 May 2014.

2. US Environmental Protection Agency Web Site.

3. National Institutes of Health. “Asthma Awareness Month 2014: NIH Continues Its Commitment To Asthma Research.” NIH.
Web.  Date of Access: 19 May 2014.

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Source: Jennifer S. O’Reilly

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