Can Anxiety cause Asthma

The year 2020 has been an especially tough one. We’ve been bombarded with bad news from all fronts, ranging from climate crises to political strife, and from racial inequality to the post-pandemic situation. 

If you’re an asthmatic living in this anxiety-inducing world, read on to identify if

  •  your anxiety is exacerbating your asthma,
  •  or vice versa,
  •  and what to do it about it.

Stress can come from anywhere: your work, environment and lifestyle. Stress causes your survival mechanisms to kick in, and the symptoms can overlap with those from asthma. 

Symptoms:

  • You experience breathlessness
  • Your chest feels tense and tight
  • Your breathing is shallower and quicker
  • You experience wheezing (a whistling sound when you breathe)

In extreme cases, stress and anxiety can trigger asthma attacks.

The key to identifying anxiety-induced asthma is to monitor patterns across your symptoms. Tracking it on your calendar is a good way to tell.

How can I treat anxiety-induced asthma?

The best way to nip this problem in the bud is to tackle the root cause – stress.

You could try some of these techniques to help reduce your stress:

1) Breathwork and meditation exercises.

2) Physical activity that feels comforting and enjoyable (Think yoga, cycling, swimming).

3) Maintaining a fixed asthma routine, which means taking your asthma medications, having regular checkups with your doctor, and recording your condition daily.

We hope this quick info-bite helps. If you would like to know more about how emotions can influence asthma, check this post out.

 

References:

Fletcher, J. (2019, June 17). What to know about stress-induced asthma. Medical News Today. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/325486 

Asthma and Stress. (n.d.).  Asthma UK. https://www.asthma.org.uk/advice/triggers/stress/