Asthma symptoms: Sign at night that could mean you have it and the long term effects

Asthma is a condition is whereby your airways narrow and swell and your body may produce extra mucus. Asthma symptoms are often worse at night and may disrupt sleep.

Often referred to as nocturnal asthma, symptoms are the same as daytime asthma, including chest tightness, shortness of breath, cough, and wheezing at night. All these problems can make sleep impossible and leave you feeling tired and irritable during the day.

But beyond impacting your day-to-day quality of life, left unchecked nocturnal asthma can be dangerous. According to the NHS website, asthma symptoms are typically worse at night which increases the risk of asthma attacks, which can be life-threatening.

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There’s currently no cure for asthma but treating early may prevent long-term lung damage and help keep the condition from getting worse over time, so keeping an eye on night-time symptoms is necessary to help control it. You should see a GP if you think you or your child may have asthma, or you have asthma and are finding it hard to control.

Symptoms

Whilst the listed symptoms of asthma are common, with many things potentially causing them, they are more likely if they:

  • happen often and keep coming back
  • are worse at night and early in the morning
  • seem to happen in response to an asthma trigger like exercise or an allergy (such as to pollen or animal fur)

If your asthma symptoms get worse contact your doctor right away if your medication doesn’t seem to ease your symptoms or if you need to use your quick-relief inhaler more often. It’s also important not to take more medication than prescribed without consulting your doctor first and overusing asthma medication can cause side effects that may make your asthma worse.

It’s also important to meet with your doctor regularly to discuss your symptoms and make any needed treatment adjustments as asthma changes over time.

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