Is Asthma a Disability Let’s Find Out What The Law Says

Is asthma a chronic illness?

Asthma is a lung condition that affects people of all ages. However, it is most commonly found among children. The symptoms of asthma include chest tightness, breathlessness, coughing, and wheezing that usually appear early morning and in the evening. You will face difficulty in breathing all the time but you will only get an asthma attack if your lungs get irritated.

Is asthma a chronic illness


Since asthma does affect the quality of life of the patient – it is understandable that people are asking questions like is asthma a disability? Doctors do not know the exact factors that cause asthma, but occupational, environmental, and genetic variables were all related to the development of the disease.

Is Asthma a disability?

Is asthma classified as a disability under existing rules? The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was passed by Congress in 1990. This federal statute was introduced to ensure that differently-abled individuals don’t face any sort of discrimination. A disability, as defined by the ADA and Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act, is a physical or mental condition that significantly limits a person’s abilities to live like a normal person.

Is Asthma a disability


Moreover, recommendations specify that a person must have certain symptoms on a regular basis in order for the law to identify asthma as a disability? Although asthma symptoms are not always visible, the law did not acknowledge asthma as a disability until 2008. Asthma patients could only notice symptoms if they come in contact with any allergen, environment, or substance that can trigger an asthma attack. The American with Disability Act (ADA) through an amendment changed the definition of a disability. The statute declared that illness having symptoms that appear exclusively at specified times should be included in the concept of impairment.  Asthma has been one of the conditions that are now officially considered a disability as a result of this change. Anyone with asthma is disabled by definition, even if their symptoms only appear after being exposed to a trigger.

What causes asthma attacks?

When you are exposed to asthma triggers, you may get an asthma attack. Your asthma triggers could be very distinct from another asthma patient. You need to understand your stressor and also learn how to prevent them.  If you cannot dodge your triggers, then it would be impossible to avoid asthma attacks. Outdoor air pollution, mold, cockroach allergen, grass or wood-burning smoke, dust mites, tobacco smoke, and flu are the most prevalent triggers.

What causes asthma attacks


What is the role of the American Disabilities Act (ADA)?

The American Disabilities Act (ADA) assists people with asthma to follow a lifestyle that includes their eating patterns, work environment, and personal hygiene. However, it also helps asthma patients to identify their respective triggers that can eventually help the patient to live normally without fearing having an asthma attack unannounced. Moreover, it also guides patients on things they should do if they find themselves in a situation where their symptoms grow worse. The act makes it necessary for schools and corporations to make necessary arrangements so that people with asthma and other forms of disabilities can easily achieve their career goals without making any compromises.

What is the role of the American Disabilities Act


It is vital to understand that to ensure the inclusion of disabled individuals – everyone must act together and avoid creating any circumstances that may trigger an asthma attack. Disabled individuals should be provided support on a need basis and sometimes other people without any disabilities may have to make some compromises while remaining sensitive towards disabled individuals. Every disabled individual has different requirements and needs – therefore they should be accommodated on the basis of that.

The following are some examples of possible accommodations:

  • Removing old/outdated carpeting are some examples of adjustments.
  • Reorganizing working environments to decrease odors.
  • Trying to restrict the use of any allergens in schools/offices.

However, an organization is not bound to make changes that put an “undue burden” or results in a “fundamental change” to its overall structure. For example, a small business without adequate financial resources to handle the additional costs of accommodation would not have (legally) made arrangements that are expensive and can affect the company’s sustainability. Some changes may have a significant impact on a company’s ability to conduct business, resulting in a significant shift. An organization must show that it has evaluated all the possibilities to identify and implement changes that are acceptable. Only after exhausting all other possibilities can an organization refuse to make changes. Determining what fits may necessitate some creativity and flexibility as well.

What is the treatment for asthma?

To keep your asthma under control, take your medications exactly as prescribed by your doctor and avoid things that can provoke an attack. Every person’s situation and severity levels are different and thus prescribed medications accordingly.

What is the treatment for asthma


For instance, your physician may prescribe some drugs that can be inhaled along with a few pills to be taken orally. Asthma medications are divided into two categories: immediate relief and long-term control. Asthma attack indicators are controlled with quick-relief medications. If you find yourself needing to use your pain relievers more frequently, consult your physician to see whether you require a new medication. Long control medication can cause you to have lesser and mild asthma symptoms, but these can’t really help you when you’re having an attack.

Asthma medications can cause some side effects, however, they are usually minor and go away easily. Discuss with your specialist more about possible adverse effects of any particular medications.

Advantages of exercise for asthma patients

Activity is beneficial for physical health along with lung condition, and those with asthma can get numerous benefits from regular exercise. It improves your lungs’ capability; your body can consume concentration of oxygen at any given time. Exercise also promotes blood supply to the heart, which pumps oxygen through the body, by increasing blood flow to the lungs. Physical activities, for instance, have a greater ability to take oxygen around the body and then into the blood, which nourishes the muscles that make us happy.


Have there been any tasks which I should try to prevent?

You need to consult your physician to understand the activities you can engage in and the activities you should totally avoid. Generally, asthma patients can do tasks that don’t require a lot of physical exertion – as that would make their lungs work faster and might trigger their asthma.

Do I need to take any asthma symptoms medications while I start exercising?

People with asthma can generally engage in any sort of activity. It’s possible that you’ll have to take medication before exercising. Aside from that, there are a few more factors that help.

  • Always begin any exercise with a warm-up.
  • Whenever exercising outside in chilly weather, wear a scarf to cover your nose and mouth.
  • Don’t forget to finish with a cooling process.
  • Stop exercising immediately if you feel any pain or even a tightness in your chest, cough, by becoming short of breath. Take a deep breath and use the inhaler for immediate relief. Relax by taking a seat. If you want to relax, try breathing deeply. Children should notify their guardians as quickly as symptoms occur, get their prescription, and calm down to rest.

Can I exercise if I have asthma?

Yes, you can. However, you need to take your medicines first and always follow your doctor’s advice.

Final thoughts

Asthma wasn’t considered a disability until 2008, but later the definition of the disabled individual was amended to add those individuals who are suffering from an invisible disability.

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