Living with Asthma, my life as I knew it was over.
Since the beginning of March 2017 something happened, it could have been the change of weather, it could have been the increased gym sessions or evening spending more time with the dogs. Whatever it was something was affecting my chest in a way I never thought possible. It was the beginning of living with asthma.
When I was younger, I was always a semi sporty kid, would run around at school during break time and wasn’t that unhealthy. Although my chest was always strange. It would close up sometimes for no apparent reason. Worse thing was, it would close up if I laughed too much.
I had gone to numerous doctors when I was younger, with one telling me I had asthma, but it wasn’t that bad and gave me a pump to use, was his was of saying that I will be living with asthma for the rest of my life. Turns out the pump he recommended was a reliever which would only be helpful after my chest closed up. The next doctor said I didn’t have Asthma, but I should keep the pump just in case. The other 2 doctors came to the conclusion I was allergic to MSG. They recommended I should steer clear and keep my pump as a reliever.
Fast forward 10 years.
In the beginning of March 2017, I woke up in the middle of the night not being able to breathe. I found My Asthavent reliever pump. Took a few puffs and managed to fall asleep after an hour or so. The next day this happened again. This keep happening for a few days. Then things got worse. I found I was using my Asthavent pump during the day. Sometimes up to 12 times a day.
I had been to the doctor three times in the past few months, which the diagnosis was a chest infection. I would take the meds and after a few days I would be ok. But, that would only last for a few days before I would need my pump on a daily basis.
The choice was made
I eventually got sick of the constant feeling of not being able to breathe and having to rely on a pump and carry one with me everywhere I went. After a few days of research I found a Dr based at the UCT private hospital in Cape Town, South Africa. I bit the bullet and booked an appointment with him.
My first mission was to go and get x-rays before we even met. This was done Tuesday the 16th May. By Thursday the 18th I was in his office chatting about my chest. Thankfully the x-rays cancelled out my biggest fears. There was no cancer, TB or anything along those lines. We did a few tests and then he said the three words which would change my life as I knew it. “You have asthma.” He said sitting across the table. “Quite a bad form it seems. Normal breath tests show asthma with a 1-1.5 change in lung function. Your tests show 3.8.” I was relieved. I finally knew what was wrong with me. It was time to start living with asthma.
The time had come to change my life
I was told that every person with asthma has different “triggers” which can cause their chest to close up. I needed to take a few weeks on meds and see if I could identify those triggers. So far, it seems dogs are a small trigger and cold air is definitely up their too. But that is a whole different story.
Not only have my surroundings had to change I now have to monitor what I eat. I need to steer clear of MSG, Sodium benzoate, Lactose, Soy extract and Yeast. Oh and I’m not allowed to drink anymore wine! What has this world come to? For two months I have to steer clear of these and then when I am on a “clean slate” I can start reintroducing things slowly back into my diet.
On the upside, it has changed my eating habits. I am now eating healthier, no junk food and no soft drinks.
Have you ever had anything happen to you which changed your life for the better? Tell us in the comments section below.