Asthma is a chronic disease that affects your ability to breathe. Your airways, the tubes that carry air in and out of your lungs, become tight, swollen and produce mucus. The airways are also sensitive, and may react strongly to things that you are allergic to or find irritating. Symptoms of asthma are wheezing, coughing, chest tightness and trouble breathing. Asthma can cause symptoms ranging from minor wheezing to life-threatening asthma attacks. (National Institutes of Health) ( Mayo Clinic)

Asthma cannot be cured, but it can be controlled through careful disease management and avoidance of triggers - those things that cause your asthma to flare-up. Taking care of your asthma may require taking long-term control medications to prevent flare-ups and short-term rescue medications to control symptoms once they start. You may need to make changes in your home, school or work environment. If asthma is well controlled, airways are open, and children and adults can live normal, active lives. If uncontrolled, asthma can disrupt sleep, cause children to miss school and adults to miss work, and may require hospitalization. In the most severe cases, asthma can result in death.

This information is provided by the Asthma Prevention and Control Program within the , Department of Public Health.