A Natural Way to Breathe Better

Have you ever tried any alternative methods to treat your asthma systems? If so, you aren't alone. Recent statistics from the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America show that one in four people use alternative treatments for various health conditions. And some studies indicate that this percentage is even higher among patients with chronic allergies and respiratory conditions.

But while some people find that a variety of the more holistic treatment approaches do make them feel better, many options that fall outside of the mainstream have not yet been medically proven to be effective. Therefore, when trying any alternative or complementary treatments, medical experts point out that it is important for patients to check with their physicians first, as well to be highly selective and only use those methods that have little or no risk involved. It is also essential to use these only in conjunction with (not instead of) their regular conventional medicines.

Treating Asthma Naturally

A few of the most promising, and safest, alternative treatment options that patients can integrate into their asthma treatment plans include various forms of exercise and physical activities. As long as your doctor gives you the go ahead, the following strategies, which can reduce stress and promote relaxation, may make a difference:

  • Breathing exercises
  • Yoga and other types of physical activity
  • Massage
  • Acupuncture

While these are simple approaches you may be able to work into your regular schedule without much danger as long as you are physically capable, other alternative approaches consist of adding special herbs, vitamins and other remedies into your diet. These types of treatment options can be more complicated.

Get the Green Light Before You Try

Before trying anything new, medical experts recommend taking the following steps to protect yourself:

  • Talk with your physician or allergist to get a professional opinion.
  • Follow remedy directions carefully and also check for possible interactions with your medications.
  • Choose only products that have passed stringent safety tests. (Keep in mind that most natural treatments are not regulated and may not meet recommended standards.)
  • Read ingredients carefully to be sure you aren't allergic to anything.

A Prescription to Feel Better

Many health insurers have limits on what they will cover when it comes to complementary medicine, so always check with them in advance to find out what falls within your benefits. Also realize that if you can get your doctor to write you a prescription for a treatment that interests you, your health plan just may give you the go ahead for a natural approach to breathing better.