Asthma Natural Treatment
Asthma is a chronic, obstructive pulmonary disease that is characterized by episodes of breathing difficulties, wheezing, coughing and other symptoms. Asthma patients experience a sensation of asphyxiation, which can be associated to the distress sensation one might feel when they are underwater, unable to surface to take a breath. This is an unpleasant experience, which in acute conditions requires emergency medical intervention.
If you suffer from asthma and you do not want to keep using inhalers, steroids and various medications, you should continue reading. This article is for you, to introduce you to Asthma natural treatment options available to treat asthma.
What is Asthma?
Asthma is a respiratory inflammation that is characterized by an increased sensitivity to various stimuli and indicated by the narrowing of respiratory tracts, coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath. The simplest way to understand asthma is that the tubes through which the air comes into the lungs, become smaller and narrower in their ability to inhale and exhale. In Western medicine, Asthma is described as a chronic, obstructive pulmonary disease that comes in episodes. The rate of illness among the population is approximately 5% and twice as much in children.
Factors that induce an Asthma attack from a medical point of view
– Respiratory infections: any virus or bacteria that causes influenza among normal people may create a complication and cause an ‘attack’ in the asthma patient.
– Allergenic factors (allergy) – such as plant pollens, various foods (like milk and flour), animal hair and mites (a small insect that resides in dust, and is the most common allergy cause).
– Stress – tension or mental stress are factors that might induce or aggravate an asthma attack.
– Strenuous physical activity – creates pressure on the respiratory system and could induce an attack.
– Nutrition – nutrition is very important. For instance, nutrition that causes an excess of mucus might induce or aggravate an attack.
– Weather – dryness, humidity, cold or heat can cause an attack. Sensitivity to weather is different for each patient, and is well explained through Chinese medicine diagnosis.
For example: a patient with an excess of dampness in the lungs; his or her condition would improve in dry weather. In contrast, dry weather could aggravate the condition of someone who suffers from asthma that results from dryness in the lungs.
– Medications – medication side effects could induce an asthma attack.
Alternative Medicine for Treating Asthma: Asthma natural treatment
Alternative medicine provides in many cases an effective treatment for asthma.
A natural asthma treatment is also effective during an asthma attack, to enable easier breathing, and also between attacks. After the treatment there is a feeling that the chest and the breathing open more and the breathing becomes more relaxed and deeper.
But the great importance of natural treatment for asthma is in treating the source of the condition, the cause that creates the asthma, and to prevent the attacks or reduce the frequency of them. This is an important part of the therapy and sometimes it is accompanied by a change of life habits.
The cause of the asthma must be diagnosed: For example, it may be connected to nutrition, inactivity, a certain emotional cause, external conditions of the environment, mental stress, the internal condition of the body such as excess mucus or dampness – every person according to his condition. There are number of methods that provide better results for treating asthma. In many cases it is recommended to combine two methods or more in order to maximize results.
We will review some of the of the main methods in alternative medicine to treat asthma.
Acupuncture to Treat Asthma
Acupuncture is highly effective to treat asthma, the results are often fast in alleviating the breathing, expanding the bronchi and relaxing the whole system.
It is recommended to have at least fifteen acupuncture sessions and follow up with maintenance treatment if necessary. Chinese medicine stresses the importance of correctly diagnosing the source of the problem and treating the root cause of asthma. Treating the root cause would bring about deep healing and it starts with a Chinese Medicine diagnosis: checking the pulse, tongue and a series of questions.
Asthma syndromes in Chinese Medicine
According to the Chinese medicine approach, asthma is divided into a number of main syndromes and every syndrome is treated differently.
1. Pathogen (invader) from an external source: it is basically a virus or bacteria. In Chinese medicine the pathogens are considered a “weather” such as heat, cold, dryness, dampness etc. which can invade the body. In this syndrome there will be a breathing difficulty that begins with flu symptoms and develops into asthma.
2. Stagnation of the liver Qi: this kind of asthma attack is characterized by chest distress and irritability. The simple way of understanding this kind of asthma cause is to see a breathing difficulty attack that is aggravated or caused by mental and emotional stress.
3. Heat in the liver: this is a root cause for asthma that is an aggravation of the “Stagnation in the liver Qi”, and shows more internal heat, such as a more acute inflammatory condition and where the wheezing would be louder.
4. Deficiency of Yin in the lungs: in Chinese medicine the term “Yin” represents the body fluids. In the case of Yin deficiency, we will see dryness in the lungs that causes dry coughing; many times, the coughing would be aggravated at night.
5. Kidney weakness: according to Chinese Medicine, one of the kidneys’ functions is to hold the incoming breath, for example breathing into the abdomen. In an asthma condition that results from kidney weakness, we will see a difficulty to inhale and take a deep breath.
6. Spleen weakness: in an asthma condition that has to do with the spleen, we will see a difficulty in the digestive system to digest food and usually there will be sensitivity to dairy products and white flour. In this case we will see dominance of mucus in the body, wheezing, fatigue, and various disturbances of the digestive system.
In any condition of asthma there is of course an involvement of the lungs, but that is not always the main factor. It could be that one patient has an involvement of a few syndromes simultaneously that causes the asthma. It is important to understand that in Chinese Medicine the functions of the internal organs are different than in Western medicine, and therefore, when there is a problem in the liver according to Chinese Medicine it does not mean that there will be a problem in the liver organ according to Western Medicine.
Asthma in relation to weather conditions
Chinese Medicine is able to understand why a certain person who suffers from asthma would find a humid weather helpful (because he has internal dryness), and another person would find a dry weather helpful (because he has internal dampness). Another example: Someone would be helped by heat (because the pathology originates from the cold) and the other would be aggravated by the heat (because of cold has created the disease).
The importance of an accurate diagnosis for Asthma
Therefore, diagnosis in Chinese medicine is important because a treatment that would benefit one person who suffers from internal cold and dampness in the lungs; would damage a person who suffers from dry heat in the lungs. This is a good example of why Chinese Medicine emphasizes that the treatment must be tailored for the individual and there is no treatment that is identical for all asthma patients.
After an accurate diagnosis of the syndrome from which the person suffers, we will choose the manner of treatment: asthma treatment in Chinese medicine consists of Acupuncture treatment and Medicinal Herbs. Chinese Medicinal herbs for asthma are administered after diagnosis and these herbs will not cause side effects like drugs. This is why it is recommended not to buy herbs in a health store, but to take herbs that were prescribed after a careful diagnosis.
It is possible to combine the therapy with Tui na – Chinese physiotherapy for releasing the respiratory muscles and expanding the chest by special stretches of the chest muscles. There are also Qigong exercises that are recommended to the patient in order to strengthen the lungs and expand the chest.
A case study of Asthma Treatment using Acupuncture
Scott, 43 years old, came to me after suffering from asthma for about three years.
Scott has a breathing difficulty which is aggravated by physical activity, weather changes and stress. The asthma is sometimes characterized by wheezing and asphyxiation and in the night time by snoring and Sleep Apnea. Scott was diagnosed according to Chinese Nedicine with an imbalance in the spleen and lungs and with excess dampness in the body. Scott was invited for Balance Method Acupuncture twice a week. At the same time he also started taking a formula of Chinese Medicinal herbs which was prescribed to strengthen the spleen and lungs and eliminate the mucus.
In addition, Scott was given instructions to avoid dairy products, white flour, white sugar, and other products that contribute the formation of phlegm in the body. After a number of weeks of gradual improvement, the breathing difficulty and wheezing were gone, Scott no longer used an inhaler, and he also said his wife was thankful for being able to sleep at night without the snoring.
Read more about Balance Method Acupuncture
Recall Healing for Asthma natural treatment
Recall Healing works on the subconscious level, identifying the emotional cause behind asthma and breathing difficulty. Recall Healing for asthma is done through conversation. The process lasts about an hour and a half and it usually takes between 3-5 sessions for results to be seen.
The emotional causes that damage the respiratory system can be many. These factors and root causes leading to asthma can usually be traced to events in the person’s life, in his or her early childhood and in the person’s genetic lineage. For example: one of the biological conflicts that are connected to the lungs is grief and death. The lungs are the organ that symbolize the beginning of life and death. Every conflict related to a fear of death or a memory of death might be linked to the lungs. In many cases it is possible to see a memory of “almost drowning” in the subconscious, or some kind of asphyxia.
Children’s Asthma in Recall Healing
Another important conflict for asthma is “I want to breathe elsewhere”. We see it a lot in cases asthmatic children. According to the Recall Healing method, the time period nine months prior to conception, the pregnancy period and the period of time from birth until the age of one, make up what is called the “Project Purpose”. This is a very important period in which a great number of significant patterns are formed in our subconscious, especially patterns that have to do with how our parents experienced life during that time. In many cases of asthma among children we can find the Project Purpose period factor, and identify the cause of the illness.
The classic example of the conflict “I want to breathe elsewhere” (connected to asthma), is that both parents come from a different city or country. In many cases, after they decided where to live, built their home and became pregnant; one of them his happy with their living conditions but the other wants to relocate and there is a difficulty between them with this conflict in the background. Because it is an unresolved difficulty, the conflict of the parents’ moves to the child’s subconscious, and the child develops asthma. In using Recall Healing to assist children with asthma, the process is done with the parents, and the participation of the child is not needed. After the conflict is found, the parents are instructed how to release the child from the conflict, usually through talking to the child in his or her sleep. With the information being absorbed by the child, they subconsciously realize that the conflict is not theirs, and the brain releases the holding in the body and lungs. In many cases, healing occurs quickly and the asthma disappears.
Resolving the emotional conflict of Asthma
Every person can experience some of the conflicts mentioned here,
or others that have to do with asthma without having the disease. The disease is caused when the conflicts are too difficult or prolonged, and the person does not find a solution. When a person does not find a solution to the conflict, the brain suppresses the conflict to the subconscious and to the body and creates a disease. In therapy we raise whatever is unconscious to the person’s consciousness. Through conversation that is accurately directed at the correct places, conflicts that existed in the past are resolved and this releases the body from the need to hold on to it.
In many cases we can already see easier breathing after a few sessions. Especially in chronic conditions in which there is already a deeper damage to the body’s balance, it is recommended to combine the Recall Healing process with acupuncture and nutritional changes. Even though the Recall Healing process for asthma is very effective, it is not for everyone. Recall Healing is for people who agree to touch sensitive places and talk about their past.
A case study addressing Asthma using Recall Healing
Greg, 36 years old, has suffered from asthma since the age of 18. He says that when he was young the illness was more severe, as where the past few years he has breathing difficulties or a light asthma attack once a month, mostly during strenuous activity. The last acute asthma attack was a month ago after catching the flu and when he needed medical attention. He always carries an inhaler in his pocket. One of his reasons from coming to therapy is that he has gained weight over the past year and he would like to exercise and to get into shape, but he is afraid to exercise because of the asthma. He decided to try Recall Healing and acupuncture treatment.
Greg filled out the Recall Healing questionnaire, and asked his mother to help him find out more about the Project Purpose period. As mentioned, the Project Purpose period is the period of time from nine months prior to conception, the pregnancy period and until the age of one. It is a very important period in which a great number of patterns are formed in our subconscious, especially patterns that have to do with how our parents experienced conflicts in their lives during that time. During that period his father worked as a salesman and had to travel a lot as part of his job. His mother suffered because of this and felt alone, and even now as she told Greg about that, a hint of complaint was heard in her voice. His father experienced the conflict in such a way that when he was on the road he wanted to get back to his pregnant wife, but when he was home he thought about work and the next trip, always wanting to get away and “breathe elsewhere”. Eventually, because of a work trip, his father did not attend Greg’s birth, which created bitterness in his mother and feelings of guilt in his father.
When we looked at the age in which the asthma first appeared, at the age of 18, that is the age in which Greg left home to another city where he started his studies and also worked to support himself. When a person leaves his home and his or her parents for the first time and becomes independent, that is the age in which the brain recreates childhood events and relives conflicts that happened during childbirth, a sort of “second childbirth”. At that time because of the asthma, Greg oscillated between going to school at the new city, and receiving medical treatments and relaxing at his parents’ home. He basically experienced the conflict of “I want to breathe elsewhere” which his father experienced during his Project Purpose.
Greg was surprised at the “coincidence” and understood the conflict, and confirmed that in his life it is difficult for him to decide where to live and he always deliberates several options. Greg has gone through three Recall Healing sessions, simultaneously having five acupuncture sessions for the respiratory system and digestive system. In the following weeks he started exercising gradually with no abnormal respiratory phenomena.
Read more about Recall Healing
Naturopathy as an Asthma natural treatment
Naturopathy and nutrition as asthma treatment are very important. In many cases, many patients report that nutrition has both a negative and a positive effect on asthma. Generally, dairy products and white flour are not recommended. Naturopathic treatment for asthma is effective because of the direct connection between nutrition and the creation of phlegm or mucus in the digestive system which moves to the lung.
The naturopathic treatment is also effective for the strengthening of the immune system through vitamin and medicinal herbs. For those who dislike maintaining a strict diet, it is recommended to combine nutrition with medicinal herbs or acupuncture or any of the methods mentioned. When the digestive system is rebalanced, it is possible to “sin” every now and again and to eat things that are slightly hard on the system, and usually this will not lead to an asthma attack.
Tui na and Massage for Asthma
Sometimes among people who suffer from asthma we will find great sensitivity in the accessory muscles used in respiratory of the neck and shoulders. The use of those muscles intensifies during an asthma attack in order to increase the ability of the lungs to expand, and often we will find that those muscles are used daily which creates neck and shoulder pains and of course poor breathing.
Usually breathing does not require the participation of any muscles except the diaphragm. Through techniques such as Tui na which is part of Chinese medicine, as well as through Shiatsu or medical massage; releasing those muscles and the rib cage improves the success of each asthma treatment presented here.
Breathing techniques – Asthma Natural Treatment
Breathing techniques such as Qi-Gong, Yoga or any other method can help as part of the activity that an asthma patient can do independently at home. Basically, it is important to increase the range movement of the lungs and the ribcage. A basic breathing exercise is inhaling to the maximum, holding your breath and then exhaling to the maximum and then to hold your breath again. Do it at least 10 times in a row a few times a day. If you feel dizzy it means that your brain is getting more air than it is used to, and it’s a good sign. Just relax for a few moments and start again. This will give an “inner massage” to your respiratory system. Consult your therapist or a Yoga or Qi-Gong teacher if you’re not sure how to do breathing exercises.
It is important to note that alternative medicine treatment for asthma is to treat the source that created the asthma and not just reduce the symptoms. It is not a therapy that only produces relief like with steroids or bronchodilators; the idea is to find the imbalance in the body and to treat it. When using such a system, often other conditions are resolved although they seemingly have nothing to do with asthma.
Often headaches, mucus, snoring, fatigue, stress, sleeping problems and other imbalances or difficulties disappear – there is no need to suffer! Sometimes we meet people who have gotten used to living with asthma and to live with limitations and drug dependency, which damages the body in the long run. There is hope and natural treatment is advisable. The longer the condition lasts the more is sets in the body, so better early than later and better now than never!
Asthma Treatment in Modern Medicine
In a nutshell, the available asthma treatment in Western medicine includes bronchodilators and steroid inhalers, in the form of medication or inhalers. It is important to note that conventional treatment alleviates symptoms during the asthma attack and if the treatment is taken on a daily or permanent basis, it prevents repeated attacks but does not prevent the development of the chronic disease – and therefore does not cure it.
Tips for people suffering from Asthma
Every person is individualistic according to the holistic approach and every person has a different treatment that suits him. Nevertheless, here are a number of general recommendations:
– Regular physical activity – Walking, swimming, yoga – do not over exert yourself because it may induce an asthma attack. Start gradually – sensitive people should protect themselves in cold weather.
– Nutrition – Nutrition is very important and it must be tailored for every patient. Generally you should avoid mucus-producing foods like dairy products, white flour and white sugar – which are called “the three whites.”
– Smoking – Avoid smoking – passive smoking too.
– Breathing – Learn how to breathe correctly – breathing through the diaphragm into the stomach.
– Allergy – It is recommended to avoid allergens for those with allergy; to shake out carpets, to stay away from animals, to avoid areas high in pollen in spring and summer, and to stay away from problematic areas, or wear a surgical mask, until the allergy could be cured as well.
– Stress – It is recommended to practice stress -reducing techniques: Meditation, reiki, Qi-Gong, yoga, etc.
– Be careful not to catch a cold – Keep the neck and throat covered, to try not to be exposed to the cold and wind.
– Reinforcing the immune system – Learn how to strengthen the immune system through Chinese medicine treatment, vitamins, physical activity etc.
We hope that after reading this article you know more about the natural treatment for asthma and breathing difficulties and wish you a quick recovery, deep, full breaths and a beautiful, healthy life.