Ha ha ha cough cough cough

Ha Ha Ha Cough Cough Cough

Ah, life. Always unpredictable, no matter how carefully you plan things. Flat tire anyone?

Life can be messy at times. Death, divorces, car accidents, layoffs, weddings, graduation, new job, new house, etc.

You can be loving life one minute and have the rug pulled out from underneath you the next. We all go through ups and downs. But how do you react to those situations?

Strong emotions and asthma

Did you know that strong emotions can trigger an asthma flare?

What are strong emotions? Examples are: laughing, crying, anger, yelling, fear or excitement.

You can be laughing one minute and crying the next (depending on who is around you!) Teenagers are notorious for having wild mood swings. For that matter, so are toddlers.

With asthma, our lungs like things nice and steady. I often tell families that asthma is a “Drama Queen”. (For those of you with teenagers, you know what I’m talking about…..) The technical term for what happens to the lungs is hypersensitivity and hyperresponsiveness. Which means that our lungs are really sensitive to any changes around us such as cold, pollen, dust, pet dander, smoke, strong odors, sudden changes in weather, etc. So hypersensitive means our bodies can be sensitive to things that don’t bother other people.

And hyper responsiveness means once we are exposed to things we are sensitive to, our lungs try to adjust but overreact. (The Drama Queen effect.) That’s when you can experience the 3 characteristics of asthma – the airways swell, produce more mucus, and constrict the airways.

Which brings me back to strong emotions.

Laughter

You and your coworkers are swapping stories about your kids or watching funny cat videos. Your ha ha ha can turn into cough cough cough.

Crying

Death. I hate it. Enough said.

Anger

The morning commute. And someone cuts you off in traffic. I saw a meme that had a photo of a yellow caution sign that read, “Left Lane Ends. Go ahead and pull your huge SUV in at the last minute everyone is OK with it.” Yeah, not me. I get angry when people cut me off. See that stick by your steering wheel? It’s called a blinker. Use it.

Yelling

This may or may not be used in the situation above. When my daughter was little and would ride in the back seat, she said, “Mom, why do you call all the other drivers “Pal” or “Buddy?” I told her I call them that because mommy was trying to not use bad words.

Fear

Basement floods. I hate them. We had a water heater that “went out” several different times and flooded the basement. I had fear when I found water on the basement floor! When my husband went to replace it for the last time, the home improvement store said, “Yeah, we don’t stock that brand anymore. We have had too many problems with that brand of water heater going out.” You don’t say.

Excitement

Me and suspense movies don’t mix. Neither does watching sporting events.

Any of the situations where you find strong emotions can cause asthma symptoms (if that happens to be one of your triggers.) But, go ahead. Enjoy life.

Just keep your Albuterol inhaler or nebulizer handy!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Asthma.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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