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Readers Respond: How Do You Let Other People Know What It Feels Like To Have Asthma?

Responses: 11


Updated September 13, 2009

Your asthma symptoms can make you feel really bad at times. How do you tell people what it is like to live day to day with this chronic disease? Tell others your best explanations for what it is like to have asthma.


an asthma attack is like being suspended on the atmosphere with air above you,it's hectic; for you strugle to exists or otherwise you'll exit
—Guest jaytee


an asthma attack is like being suspended on the atmosphere with air above you,it's hectic; for you strugle to exists or otherwise you'll exit
—Guest jaytee

understanding asthma

Though, all the symptoms and conditions, allergies, and treatment is similar or the same expressed by medical professors, in my view, it is not at all systematically understood. experts say asthma is the result of allergies.The respiration system,especially, the nose, throat, and the lungs over react.And the respiratory track swells, chokes, and the way is narrowed.Of course true.But only this makes one suffocated and breath struggling is not correct. This is how the experts not yet under stood asthma. The main problem lies with lungs. Lungs cause asthma rather than allergies. When one is exposed to some pollution allergic to the person, the lung resorts to, or order the mechanism in the throat, swipe inhaling. And at the same time, the lower lungs refuse to take in the respiration so swipe inhaled which is the deep inhalation in a normal person. Asthma is nothing but passive cough. If it can be set right physically--by gentle breathing, voice overs, throat exercise, asthma cured.
—Guest jajalamd

Like breathing through a straw

To me, there is some chest pain/discomfort while at the same time I have to use every muscle I have to push air out of my lungs, which are full of air, to get my next breath, and then repeat that again and again. I think having them pinch their nose and ONLY breath through a very narrow straw, like those used to stir coffee, would give a good impression of the effort it takes, at the same time showing how hard it is to give an efford when you're starved for oxygen.
—Guest Michael


I've asthma since 8 years-old, I'm 50 years-old and my political family don't understand when I tell them I can't eat when I'm starting asthma or breathing difficulty,I'd like they feel it, it's impossible to explain that our diaphragma & stomach must be empty to breath a little better.
—Guest Marilou

Answer from a great specialist

A wonderful specialist years ago gave me the perfect metaphor for my friends who thought asthma was psychosomatic: "Tell them to imagine being submerged in a sealed container filled with water and nothing but a tiny hole at the top through which a bar straw was inserted...and try to imagine what it would be like breathing through that tiny straw or drowning for an entire day. Then tell them that sometimes it is like that for you for days or weeks at a time." People were really able to put themselves in my place if they seriously tried imagining that...it helped a lot in changing attitudes. That was many years ago and I've still never come up with a better metaphor.

What asthma feels like

after you take a really deep breath.......hold it....then try to breath again...........thats what asthma feels like............not good.
—Guest Robin V


I myself have bad asthma and my friends and family have no idea how hard it is sometimes! :( I can tell them but they never know exactly. I say to them that it feels like you have just ran 99,000 km on a really hot day. Then you should try breathing easily because it's not possible i don't think! To anyone else who has asthma i just want to say that even on the hardest days you will be ok
—Guest Hannah

I blog about it

I blog about it and I network with other asthmatics who do the same. I take an active role in asthma research and I try to educate as many people as I can, even my doctors.
—Guest Breathinstephen

asthmatic symptoms feel like...

there is an elephant on my chest. Sometimes I start coughing and feel as though I'll never stop and that my eyeballs will fly out of my head. Coughing produces mucus which makes me feel as though I am drowning. The three times that my asthma was bad, I had wheezing.
—Guest Glenda

What Asthma feels like ...

Asthma feels like you are drowing or someone is suffocating you. It causes you to sometimes cough as if you are a smoker. It makes you feel like you have 5000 bricks sitting on your chest.
—Guest Lila

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