Exercise-Induced Asthma or Exercise-Induced Bronchoconstriction (EIB) is airflow obstruction that occurs during or shortly after physical activity. As many as 90% of all people who have asthma will experience symptoms of EIB during physical activity. So, how do you spot EIB?
Symptoms of Exercise-Induced Asthma
Symptoms of EIB are similar to chronic asthma and include shortness of breath or wheezing, decreased endurance, tightness in the chest, shortness of breath, cough, upset stomach, and sore throat. EIB may occur due to the sudden increase of cold and dry air coming into the airways. This can mean that symptoms tend to be worse in colder weather.
Can I Still Be Active with EIB?
While some activities and cold-weather sports can be more difficult, ultimately no sport must be off-limits just because you have asthma. In fact, 8% of Olympic athletes have asthma. Some activities and sports that are less likely to cause EIB symptoms including biking, hiking, swimming, and walking. Baseball and football are also less likely to cause symptoms because they require short bursts of energy.
Tips for Managing You EIB
1) Create an asthma action plan for yourself or your kids to have on hand. Share with coaches so they know exactly what to do in an emergency.
2) Make sure you inform coaches and teammates about your asthma so that everyone around you recognizes the warning signs.
3) Keep your emergency medication with you at all times. For tips on how to use your inhaler – bit.ly/inhalervideo
4) Staying hydrated and doing pre-exercise warm-ups and cool-down exercises can help reduce EIB symptoms.
5) Check the pollen, humidity, and air quality before going outside for exercise so you can be cautious and make smart decisions about how much you can push yourself.
6) Know your limits with exercise and sports. Pay attention to your body and listen to it when it tells you that you need a break.7) Manage allergens in your home. Taking precautions before we go outside for exercise is important but keeping an eye on the allergens in your home can play a huge part in how the allergens you encounter outside will impact you. Let AirAnswers® help you find out what allergens are in your home, making you sick. Visit AirAnswers.com for more information and a personalized action plan.