Asthma can be described as having “twitchy airways” This is because the bronchial airways suddenly contract; there is tightness in your chest and you become short of breath and you start to cough and wheeze.

If you're under 40 the likelihood of your asthma being triggered by an allergy is thought to be about 90%. Nowadays it is thought that pollen allergies, animal fluff, dust mites and mold are probably the most likely culprits for the increase in the incidence of people suffering from asthma like symptoms.

After the age of 40 the percentage falls to about 50% with the other 50% thought to be caused by other diseases such as COPD or Emphysema.

Asthma is a reversible disease and as long as it is controlled by the correct medication and a great deal of common sense then it does not have to be a life sentence, all you have to do is remember your triggers and avoid them as much as possible, this includes:

* Staying out of smoked filled rooms, even if you do not smoke yourself you still should not be around people who do even if they are not smoking in front of you, cigarette smoke can cling to their clothes and if you are hypersensitive it could trigger an attack. Asthmatic children are especially vulnerable.

* If you suffer from asthma you'll probably find that fireplaces and wood burners exacerbate your asthma problem, if you do not have much choice about living with them then you should ensure the room is well ventilated and the chimney is airtight.

* There is a school of thought that going to sleep on a full stomach may possibly induce an asthma attack especially if you are prone to acid reflux. If this is the case try propping the pillows up to sleep and taking an antacid before retiring. This may sort the problem out. Alternately do not make a habit of eating heavily just before you go to bed.

* Cold air is one of the worst triggers for inducing an asthma attack so if you do have to go outside when it is very cold then make sure you keep your mouth well wrapped with a scarf to prevent breathing in the cold air. The scarf turns the air you are breathing warm and moist.

* Air conditioning can also indicate an attack if it's drawing the air in from outside your vehicle. This is because it's drawing in all the triggers you are possibly averse to such as pollen and fumes. If you do want to run your air conditioner, make sure it's set to re-circulate the air inside the car.

* Even the kitchen can have its hazards. If you're sensitive to certain foods then even smelling them cooking could trigger an asthmatic attack. It's a good excuse to get someone else to do the cooking!

* Go easy on the salt; there has been recent research which suggests that there is a definite correlation between the consumption of salt and asthma in both adults and children.

* There is a general consensus that some food additives can have a huge impact on asthma sufferers (especially children). If your child is an asthmatic you should start checking labels carefully on the foodstuff that you buy to ensure there are no additives. You may be surprised at the improvement in their asthma symptoms. Metabisulphite is the main culprit and should be avoided if possible.

* Do not use aspirin if you have a headache or any other aches and pains. Many asthma sufferers can be very sensitive to aspirin and its ingestion has led to death on a number of occasions.

* Finally use your inhalers correctly. Unfortunately there are a lot of asthmatics out there who do not use their inhalers as they should. There is a specific technique to using an inhaler and if you do not inhale correctly the medicine will not hit your airways and lungs as it should, ensure you're taught how to use it by someone who actually knows what they are doing.

Having asthma is not a life sentence because it can be managed very well. Even some sufferers of asthma can live normal productive lives as long as they manage their condition to the best of their ability, all it takes is a pinch of common sense and ensuring you know as much as you possibly can about your condition.

If you would like to know more about asthma and it's remedies then click on ASTHMA AND TREATMENT below.