What is asthma?
Asthma is a common lung condition that causes occasional breathing difficulties.
It’s estimated that 300 million people worldwide suffer from it. It is a chronic lung condition characterised by recurrent breathing problems. Sufferers experience symptoms such as breathlessness, wheezing, chest tightness, and coughing.
Our airways carry air in and out of your lungs. If you have asthma, they are very sensitive. Certain things can trigger the muscles around your airways to tighten, making them narrower. The airway lining also becomes inflamed causing a build-up of sputum. This makes them even narrower still. With narrow airways, it’s harder to get air in and out of your lungs1.
It affects people of all ages and often starts in childhood, although it can also develop for the first time in adults.
There’s currently no cure. However, there are simple treatments that can help keep the symptoms under control so it doesn’t have a big impact on your life 2. You can read more about this in our article about treating asthma.