I attended the allergies and asthma workshop on Sunday. I picked that one because at the beginning of this year I had a really long cold-like sickness, with a terrible deep cough for over a month that left me completely breathless when I played soccer. I went to the doctor many times, always leaving with new medicine and a new inhaler, but the doctor always putting off the asthma test. I was hoping this workshop would be helpful in my research on whether or not I have asthma. I’ve researched it before, so I didn’t learn too much new information, but this is what I did learn.
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Asthma is the bronchial constriction of the air passages. It can be a nuisance, and in its worst cases it can be lethal. There is an asthma gene, but since there’s not just one, they haven’t yet found the specific one. The development of asthma can be parallel one’s living environment. For example, urban areas have higher asthma rates. The reason rural has less is because of the hygiene hypothesis. This hypothesis is during development, exposure to farm animals and milk (“good bacteria”) may create better immunity, lessening the chance of asthma development in later years.
Histamines cause asthmatic reactions. Someone will inhale an allergen, which sets off their immune system. Then antibodies are generated, which react with mass cells.
I learned all that, but my favorite part of the festival was spinning the Crest wheel and winning a free toothbrush and toothpaste. Well, either that or the free “healthy whole grain with whole wheat flour and a hint of honey” bread.
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