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myaroma Offline OP
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If you suffer from asthma, boil some of the aloe Vera leaves in a pan of water and inhale the vapors. Put a towel over the head and pan to get the full effects of the vapors.

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Shark
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Never knew about this. thanks.

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Amoeba
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Haven't heard of it. I used to have bad asthma and was hospitalized and on breathing treatments for over 2 weeks when I was younger.

The only treatment for asthma that is worthwhile is to allow your body to fight it. This means not relying on your medicine and exercising, even pushing yourself at times.

Doctors and family would tell me to keep taking my asthma medicine (proventil, beclovent, and even oral steroids) whenever I sensed the slightest discomfort or weezing.

Eventually I was weened off the heavy steroids. After that I decided I would only take them when absolutely necessary. I would push myself in physical exercise (basketball, running, etc.) and just let my body deal with a little weezing and shortness of breath.

This is the only way you can defeat asthma, by pushing your body to fight it. The body is incredible at adapting. You can't do it overnight, but if you are smart enough and do it right you can get to the point where you do not need any asthma medication.

I haven't taken asthma medication in 10 years, I can run 5 miles nonstop, and even ski in Colorado without no issues.

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Jellyfish
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Hi Suthernbelle, haven't seen you for awhile. smile

I'm happy that you're symptom-free from your asthma and sincerely hope your good health continues, but I just want to point out that what works for one asthma sufferer doesn't always work for another.

Every case of asthma is different--part of what makes this disease so frustrating!--so while fighting your asthma w/out meds was worthwhile for you, that very same regimen could send someone else into severe respiratory distress.

I very strongly caution people NOT to just fight through their asthma, unless it is under a dr.'s supervision and you have immediate access to meds in case you need them. I'd never condone this for children under any circumstances. Not treating asthma flares usually leads to scar tissue build-up--and you have no way of knowing if that's happening inside your lungs unless you get a chest x-ray. Too much scar tissue can cause much more severe asthma later on in life and result in cases where bronchodilators alone don't work.

We have someone on this board, in fact---Rosie---whose undertreated asthma as a child led to her severe asthma today. She has to stay on oral steroids all the time b/c not much else works well for her. (Rosie, I apologize if I got any part of your story wrong!)

No offense meant, Suthernbelle. I appreciate your contribution to the board and EVERY voice adds to the dialogue, even if we don't agree. But I'd be surprised if ignoring asthma symptoms works for many other people w/out seeing their asthma rebound worse many years later.

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Amoeba
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I wasn't saying to ignore asthma symptoms, but the point is that you should know your own body and what you can handle. As a child you may not know that, but when you get a little bit older you do.

We have gotten to the point now where we give our kids medication for everything. The slightest discomfort and we go to the medicine cabinet.

Some people may be comfortable living their entire life with asthma. If you make the decision that you are going to defeat it, you can.

And the only way to defeat it is to rely less and less on the medication while exercising.

Medication is just a temporary solution, a treatment. If you want a cure you have to do it on your own. You can do it safe and gradual. The body adapts.

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Koala
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There's no such thing as "defeating" or "curing" asthma. That's a common fallacy, but it is most definitely a fallacy. Some people are fortunate in that as they grow older they become less sensitive to the triggers that cause asthmatic flares--consider it as if your disorder went into remission. If you want to consider that an adaptation, fine. Just realize that for most people, as Amy indicated above, ignoring symptoms, refusing meds or using them contra to medical instruction, even if you think you are doing well, may very likely result in some rather sever scarring of the lung tissue and decreased muscle capacity. Its not pretty. If you want to know what its like to live with scarred lungs and diminished lung capacity, visit with someone who at age 55 or 65 now is being treated for asthma-related COPD. Medication isn't a temporary solution. Its an active, ongoing treatment process. If you get to the point where your need is reduced or diminishes altogether for a time, hurray! Just remember, any major life change (pregnancy, menopause, severe respiratory illness/injury) can reactivate your sensitivity to your asthma triggers or even make your sensitivity worse. YOu may go 20, 30 or 40 years seemingly asymptomatic and then have a sudden flare. THat's the life of an asthmatic.

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Jellyfish
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Yes, exactly. Thanks, Lynn. smile

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Amoeba
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Sorry Dr. Lynn, but there is such thing as defeating it. It's when you break away from reliance on medication and the disease no longer controls your physical life. And you can do the things you used to not be able to.

If you have inhalers prescribed, you should have them with you at all times, but there is nothing wrong with pushing your body a little bit at a time w/ exercise. It does adapt.

Amy and Lynn, I do understand and appreciate your points. What I was able to do may not be the proper route for another, as everyone is different.

But if you keep feeding yourself medication and keep the same physical activity level your whole life, your body has no reason to adapt! And asthma will control you.

Last edited by suthernbelle; 08/15/07 12:40 AM.
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Koala
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"...but there is such thing as defeating it."

I'm sorry, but that's not a valid statement. Suggesting that its appropriate to either not medicate or medicate contra to your action plan is self-defeating. It's a little like telling a Type I diabetic not to use insulin as prescribed--just push past those sugar highs. Advice which is neither medically valid nor sound; and can result in unneccessary hospitalization, severe illness and/or death. (Yes, asthma can kill you.)

Asthma, properly managed with appropriate interventions doesn't prevent you from doing things. Case in point, Jackie Joyner-Kersee--Olympic athlete and asthmatic. She is a successful, competitive athlete because she listens to her body AND manages her asthma--she doesn't ignore it.

There's a wonderful article about Kersee in the USA Today archives: BellaOnline ALERT: For anti-spam reasons, we restrict the number of URLs allowed in a given post. You have exceeded our maximum number of URLs.

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Amoeba
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Lynn, I've already clarified that it may not be appropriate for one to stray from doctor's orders and I know that asthma can kill; I was hospitalized on breathing treatments for 2 weeks before.

Your statement about Jackie Joyner Kersee actually supports what I have been saying. You don't think Olympic athletes push their bodies? Get real. Perhaps Lance Armstrong is just a lucky fellow as well? But then again, I'm sure he didn't push his body and followed every doctor's order.

That being said, your analogy to type I diabetes just doesn't make sense. Why didn't you make the analogy to type II? Oh, perhaps you didn't do that because 80% of type II are overweight and they COULD HAVE done something about it.

I've found incredible results from relying less and less on my prescribed inhalers and pushing myself at times.

And a quick wikipedia search pulls up - "The Buteyko method, a Russian therapy based on breathing exercises, has been investigated. A randomized, controlled trial of just 39 patients in 1998 showed a substantial reduction in the need for beta-agonists and a 50% reduction in the need for inhaled steroids. Quality of life scores improved significantly as people were less afraid of their condition and more confident of the future. Lung function remained the same despite the decrease in medication.[54] A trial in New Zealand in 2000 showed an 85% reduction in the use of beta-agonist medication and a 50% reduction in inhaled steroid use after six months."

There are things you can do to lessen your dependence on prescribed asthma medication. Oral steroids IS NOT a pleasant experience. Taking inhalers regularly isn't either.

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