Asthma in Pregnancy

Introduction: Before talking about gestational asthma, Asthma is an inflammatory disease of the respiratory system. Some of its symptoms are difficulty breathing, wheezing, chest pain, cough. These symptoms are usually felt more at night. In this disease, some stimulating substance or allergy from outside causes inflammation of the respiratory system and changes its structure. This results in narrowing of the airways and shortness of breath.

Some of the factors that can trigger an asthma flare-up are:
  • Dust,
  • Flower molecules,
  • Cold weather
  • Physical activity,
  • Exercise
  • Environmental pollution,
  • Cigarette smoke
  • Stress
What can cause asthma in pregnancy?

1) Shortness of breath is common in mothers while the baby is in the womb. This is due to changes in the position of the lungs and hormonal changes during pregnancy . So if someone comes with asthma symptoms for the first time during this time, it becomes difficult to diagnose. Because it can be due to normal pregnancy or other pathologies, such as asthma, thyroid hormone abnormalities, anemia etc. Therefore, accurate history and observation are necessary for the diagnosis of asthma.

2) 3-4 out of 100 pregnant women suffer from asthma. In most cases (50%) the condition remains unchanged during pregnancy. In some, dyspnea increases (30%) and becomes difficult to control, while in others, dyspnea may become less severe than before.

3) Uncontrolled asthma can cause problems for the mother and baby during pregnancy, such as low birth weight, premature delivery, high blood pressure in the mother, preeclampsia, etc.

As a result, uncontrolled asthma increases the risk of maternal and child mortality. However, if asthma is under control, it is not so harmful in pregnancy.

What to do if you have asthma during pregnancy

(1) Pregnant women with asthma or who have been diagnosed with asthma during pregnancy should be under the regular care of a chest specialist from the start. Each mother has a different treatment plan depending on the extent of her breathing problems. Two common inhalers for shortness of breath are beta-adrenergic agonist and corticosteroid inhalers.

A woman using an inhaler

It is not right to take medicine without doctor's advice. Besides, other oral medications include Theophylline, Montelukast, Ketotifen, Steroid Tablets. Mothers with asthma need to be sure of one thing; Are these medicines used in this disease safe for the fetus? It is seen that many pregnant women suddenly stop taking medicine without consulting the doctor, which increases the risk of breathing problems and sometimes becomes difficult to control.

(2) Indigestion or heartburn can aggravate asthma. So acid secretion should be kept under control through medicine, should not eat too much at once and should eat little and go to sleep three to four hours after eating.

(3) Mothers with a high prevalence of dyspnea should monitor the baby's movements regularly from seven months after conception. If the baby's movement seems less, it should be reported to the doctor.

(4) Allergic substances that may exacerbate asthma; Stay away from it. This will reduce the amount of medicine used. Influenza vaccine can be given during pregnancy to reduce the incidence of asthma.

(5) Mothers with asthma are encouraged to breastfeed their baby regularly, as the baby will get the antibodies it needs from the mother to protect it from later asthma or any allergic attacks.