Asthma can be diagnosed at any time in one's life. While there is no cure for asthma, it can be managed by working with a healthcare provider to develop a plan to keep your asthma under control.
Asthma is well-controlled if you:
- Need your quick-relief inhaler less than 3 times per week.
- Do not wake up with asthma during the night
- Do daily activities including exercise with few to no symptoms
Six steps you can take to keep your asthma under control
- Step 1: Make Your Medical Visits More Productive
There are a number of resources available to help you ask the right questions about asthma management and treatment the next time you see your healthcare provider.
- Step 2: Create an Asthma Management Plan
Learn how to develop a plan with your healthcare provider that includes key information on managing your asthma.
- Step 3: Assess and Monitor Your Control
Common asthma symptoms can include a cough, tight feeling in your chest, wheezing, activity limitation and feeling tired. Keeping track of your symptoms will help you stay in control.
- Step 4: Understand Your Medication
There are a variety of medicines available to treat asthma. Each person's asthma is different and your doctor and healthcare team will work with you to set up a personalized plan.
- Step 5: Reduce Asthma Triggers
Identify your asthma triggers and learn simple ways to limit your exposure or avoid them altogether.
- Step 6: Learn Asthma Self-Management Skills
Learn more about asthma, including our asthma basics online course and what is asthma animation.
Is Your Asthma Under Control?
The Pathway to Managing Your Asthma
Don't let asthma hold you back from being active. Physical activity benefits your overall health and lung health! Generally, people with asthma can participate in all types of exercise, along with guidance from your healthcare provider. Learn more about exercise and asthma
With asthma, you are at greater risk for serious complications from influenza (flu) and pneumonia. To protect yourself against the flu you should be immunized every year. The seasonal flu virus changes slightly every year and that is why it is important for you to get vaccinated every season. See where you can get the flu vaccine. There are two pneumonia vaccines. The Pneumovax 23 vaccine is important to get at least once, and sometimes a booster shot is recommended. Prevnar 13 is recommended for older adults. Ask your healthcare provider if it is time for your pneumonia shot.
Emotional stress is a common trigger for asthma. Here are some basic tips to help reduce stress.
Many people with asthma also have allergies, but there are other common health conditions that can occur at the same time. When you have multiple health conditions, it important that each member of your healthcare team know about all of your diseases, so they can find the best treatment options for you. Learn more about other common health conditions and the impact that they can have on asthma symptoms and management.
If you have asthma and smoke, make a plan to quit. The American Lung Association can help. Learn more about smoking and asthma.
Create Asthma-Friendly Environments
After you've learned about your asthma and are taking the right steps to better manage the disease, make sure the places that you visit most often do not increase the chances of an asthma emergency. Find out what you, your family and your coworkers can do to create asthma-friendly environments.
Reviewed and approved by the American Lung Association Scientific and Medical Editorial Review Panel.
Page last updated: December 7, 2022