Can Asthma Go Away?

A woman sits on her bed and uses an inhaler will holding her chest.
  • Studies have shown that about 50% of children with asthma can outgrow the condition in their lifetimes. But in some cases, symptoms may return later in life.

  • Children who only experience mild symptoms and have healthy lung function are more likely to outgrow asthma.

  • If you have symptoms of asthma, it’s important to see a health care provider to develop a plan of action so that you can live a normal life.

What is Asthma?

Asthma is a chronic lung condition that causes inflammation and narrowing of the airways, resulting in breathing difficulties.

In people with asthma, the airways are more sensitive to certain triggers, which can cause inflamed and swollen airways. This can lead to asthma attacks and other symptoms.

Asthma is a common condition that often begins in childhood, but affects people of all ages.

Asthma can range from mild to severe, while symptoms and triggers can vary from person to person.

Although asthma can’t be cured, there are plenty of treatments available to help manage symptoms.

What are the different types of asthma?

There are several different types of asthma, and symptoms and triggers vary for each type.

  • Allergic asthma: This condition is the result of exposure to allergens such as pollen and pet dander

  • Non-allergic asthma: This type of asthma is triggered by factors other than allergens, such as cold air, infections, stress, or irritants like cigarette smoke

  • Exercise-induced asthma: This type of asthma occurs as a result of physical exertion

  • Occupational asthma: This is the result of exposure to substances found in the workplace, such as chemicals, fumes, and dust

  • Childhood asthma: This asthma begins in childhood, and the child might outgrow asthma over time

  • Adult-onset asthma: This asthma develops in adults and may be triggered by hormonal changes and respiratory infections

What are the Symptoms of Asthma?

Asthma symptoms will vary depending on the type of asthma you have. However, these are the most common symptoms:

  • Wheezing

  • Shortness of breath

  • Chest tightness

  • Rapid breathing

  • Fatigue

  • Difficulty speaking

  • Anxiety

A child lies down and holds their inhaler chamber to their face.

What are Asthma Triggers?

Asthma can be brought on by many things, and these triggers often depend on the type of asthma you have. Some common triggers include:

  • Allergens: Dust mites, pollen, mold spores, pet dander, or seasonal allergies can all cause asthma

  • Irritants: Air pollution, smoke, and chemical fumes

  • Respiratory issues: Colds, flu, and other infections

  • Exercise: Physical activity may trigger asthma

  • Weather changes: Sudden cold weather or humidity

  • Stress: Emotional stress or anxiety can worsen asthma

  • Medications: Aspirin, for example, can cause asthma symptoms

  • Foods: Certain additives and preservatives can trigger asthma

  • Hormonal changes: Changes in hormone levels during pregnancy or menstrual cycles

What is an Asthma Attack?

Also known as an asthma exacerbation, an asthma attack is a sudden worsening of asthma symptoms that can be fatal.

During asthma attacks, the airways become narrow and inflamed, making it difficult to breathe.

These attacks can often be treated with medication, but severe asthma attacks may require hospitalization.

Treatment for a severe asthma attack may include oxygen therapy, bronchodilators, or corticosteroids, which must be prescribed by a medical professional.

Can You Outgrow Asthma?

It’s possible for asthma to disappear, particularly if the symptoms experienced were mild and developed during childhood. This is known as asthma remission. However, in some cases, asthma symptoms return later in life.

It’s difficult to predict whether outgrowing asthma is a possibility. Studies have shown that about half of children outgrow asthma, or their symptoms decrease as adults. The other half will have asthma symptoms their entire lives.

Children who experience only mild symptoms, have no allergies, and have good lung function have an increased likelihood of outgrowing asthma.

Even if outgrowing asthma is a possibility, it’s still highly important that you work closely with a healthcare professional to control symptoms and prevent asthma attacks.

What are the Risk Factors for Developing Asthma?

Several factors can put you at a higher risk for developing asthma and other respiratory diseases. These include:

  • A family history of asthma

  • Allergic diseases

  • Environmental factors

  • Respiratory infections

  • Obesity

  • Age

A man stands outside and uses an inhaler.

What Options are Available for Asthma Treatment?

If you suspect that you have asthma, it’s vital that you consult with a doctor to get proper medical care.

Your doctor will help you develop an asthma action plan to treat your specific type of asthma so that you can live a healthy, active life.

Some common asthma treatment options include:

  • A quick relief inhaler

  • Rescue medications

  • Long-term controller medications

  • Oral corticosteroids

  • Allergy medications

Most of these are medications that only a doctor can prescribe, and they can help you live a symptom-free life.

How Can I Improve or Prevent Symptoms of Asthma?

You can improve your lung function and possibly prevent developing asthma by doing the following:

  • Maintaining a healthy weight

  • Quitting smoking or avoiding secondhand smoke

  • Exercising regularly

  • Avoiding known triggers

  • Taking prescribed medications as directed

Where Can I Learn More About Asthma?

You can consult one of our health care providers to get medical help and relief for your asthma symptoms.

Head over to LifeMD to book your appointment today.

Guiselly Ezaro-Romero, FNP-C

Guiselly holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Master of Science with a Family Nurse Practitioner concentration. In 2023, she earned her Doctor of Nursing Practice. Guiselly has experience in acute care, long-term care, primary care, and hospice.

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This article is intended for informational purposes only and should not be considered medical advice. Consult a healthcare professional or call a doctor in the case of a medical emergency.

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