Did you know asthma affects around 235 million people on the planet? Today is World Asthma Day, so we think this is the perfect opportunity to bring awareness to the condition and the complementary therapy that can help prevent future attacks.
Let’s start with some asthma facts from the World Health Organisation.
- The condition cannot be cured completely, but you can manage it.
- It occurs all over the world, in both Western and developing countries.
- It is the most common chronic disease among children.
- It is more common in boys than girls but this reverses in adulthood.
- Risk factors for developing asthma include exposure to house dust mites, dander, pollution, pollen and cigarette smoke.
- Common triggers include cold air and exercise, as well as the above initial triggers.
For asthma sufferers, the below list of symptoms will come as no great surprise. However, some people may recognise their mysterious breathing issues. It’s common for people to be unaware they have asthma, having long attributed their symptoms to something else (or worse still, have ignored them all together). This often means the problem has been left untreated.
The Global Initiative for Asthma outlined the typical signs that can lead to a diagnosis:
- Shortness of breath, wheezing, cough or chest tightness. You must have at least two of these to meet a diagnosis.
- Symptoms that worsen at night or early in the morning.
- Symptoms that vary over time and in intensity.
- Symptoms are usually triggered by viruses, exercise, allergens, weather changes or irritants such as car exhaust fumes or smoke.
By far the most common trigger is a cold or flu virus. However, some other triggers may come as a surprise. High arousal emotions such as love, anger, stress and anxiety can initiate an attack, as can female hormones. Even laughter and certain foods can cause a flare-up for some people. You can find an in-depth list of triggers here.
The good news is there are therapies that can assist your recovery and prevent future attacks happening. Kinesiology works particularly well with emotional triggers. We see and treat people from all walks of life – young and old, men and women. We also see people who have had a recent attack out of nowhere while others have struggled their whole life with no aid beyond inhalers.
Nicolie O’Neill, O’Neill Kinesiology College’s founder, believes the best time to seek kinesiology treatment is when you’re not currently having attacks.
“We would never recommend anyone go off their medication and if you’ve had a severe attack, you need to go to hospital,” she said. “Kinesiology works best for people when they’re well and we can work to prevent future attacks happening.”
The therapy addresses the receptors in the neck responsible for attacks. The response released by the receptors is usually set very high in asthmatics after a certain number of triggering events. Kinesiology rebalancing brings it down to a more manageable level, and more in line with the rest of the population.
“Your body is set up so that once you’ve had a nasty attack, you get a response onslaught to deal with that attack. We work to heal the system so it doesn’t always go into a panic,” Nicolie said.
Anyone with asthma can benefit from kinesiology rebalancing – even severe asthmatics, young children or older people who have had it for decades. You’re not beyond help.
HOW MANY KINESIOLOGY SESSIONS DO I NEED?
Nicolie recommends five or six kinesiology sessions, depending on how long you’ve had the condition and your individual circumstances. Five to six sessions spaced a fortnight apart is the typical schedule. You don’t require more than this because the body needs time to learn to balance itself.
WHAT IF I HAVE AN ASTHMA RELAPSE?
You’ll need to come back in to the clinic for a rebalancing appointment. If you’ve previously been through a full treatment schedule, your body should respond well the second time around and you will need considerably less sessions.
If you are having severe or have had multiple attacks recently, please see your doctor or go to a hospital as soon as possible.
For more information, visit www.oneillcollege.com.au or call (08) 9330 7443.