What Are the Symptoms of Asthma?
Asthma symptoms include episodes of:
- Tightness or pressure in the chest.
- Shortness of breath.
- Wheezing (a high-pitched whistling sound that occurs when exhaling).
- Coughing, especially at night.
Early warning signs of the onset of an asthma attack include:
- Signs of a cold.
- Frequent cough, especially at night.
- The need to use your rescue inhaler.
- Losing your breath easily (exercise-induced bronchospasm).
- A decrease in lung function, as measured by a spirometer or peak flow meter.
Call Your Doctor About Asthma If:
- You or another person is experiencing an asthma attack for the first time. Asthma can quickly become serious if not treated promptly and properly.
- Your rescue inhaler (usually albuterol) does not work to relieve your symptoms within 20 minutes.
- You or the person with asthma cannot talk in complete sentences. Other things to look for: flaring nostrils; the skin between the ribs is sucked in with each breath; the lips or the skin under the nails appear grayish or bluish. These are all signs of extreme oxygen deprivation. Get immediate emergency treatment.