Exercise Induced Asthma

If your chest feels tight, you have trouble catching your breath or you cough during or after exercise, you might have exercise-induced bronchoconstriction. That’s EIB for short, and it simply means breathing problems brought on by exercise. Most people with asthma have EIB. But, it’s also possible to have EIB and not have asthma. The good news is you can exercise control when you exercise.

No matter what sport or exercise activities you do, your allergist can work with you to keep your condition under control.

If you think you might have EIB, with asthma or not, there are two important things for you to know:

  • An allergist can diagnose and treat your EIB
  • Under your allergist’s care, you can and should keep exercising

What happens if I have EIB?

When you exercise hard and do things such as running, skiing, biking or an aerobics class, you breathe more rapidly. This fast breathing can make the airways inside your lungs dry and irritated. As a result, the airways actually get smaller, and it’s hard to get air in and out of your lungs. This is more likely to happen when you exercise in cold, dry air, or when there is a sudden change in temperature or humidity.