Don't Let Asthma Stop You From Being an Athlete

Updated on Thursday, July 3, 2014

Patients with asthma and allergies can be competitive athletes. In fact, 8 percent of U.S. Olympic athletes have asthma. With appropriate diagnosis and management, asthma patients should be able to enjoy an active lifestyle.

For you or your child to compete, identification of allergen triggers and assessment of lung function and response to therapy is critical.

Patients with nasal allergies are at increased risk of having asthma-type symptoms with allergen exposure, colds, or exercise, so it is particularly important to maximize control of nasal allergy symptoms in addition to treating the lungs.

Even trained athletes can get short of breath when pushing to their limits, so it is important to differentiate when the symptoms are truly due to asthma or bronchospasm or if it's just a hard workout.

An allergist can help identify allergy triggers, assess pulmonary functioning, and suggest appropriate therapy.