Problems to breathe

Why Does Asthma Get Worse At Night

Sheetal B
By Sheetal B. Updated: January 20, 2017
Why Does Asthma Get Worse At Night

You can tell you have Asthma, among other signs, by wheezing, cough and difficulty in breathing when in contact with an allergen. This condition affects the passage of air through the respiratory tract to and from the lungs. Though living with asthma is uncomfortable at all times, it tends to get worse at night for some patients. This is also referred at Nocturnal Asthma and can greatly affect a patient’s quality of sleep and in turn his/her lifestyle.

Why does asthma get worse at night though? At, we take a look into the possible causes.



You may also be interested in: How to Treat Bronchospasm at Home
  1. Body’s Response When Sleeping
  2. Sleep Position
  3. The Surroundings At Night
  4. Life With Asthma

Body’s Response When Sleeping

The body’s response to asthma is the lowest mostly during the wee hours of the morning. Reason being, the production of hormones varies as per the body clock and the asthma fighting hormone is at its lowest point at this time. It’s very common to hear nocturnal asthma patients complaining of waking up fighting for breath in the early morning hours.

Sleep Position

When in a lying down position, there is higher probability of accumulation of secretions in the air passage from nostrils to chest and lungs getting stressed due to blockage and decreased volume. By sitting or standing up straight, gravity can help in clearing the airways and lowering the discomfort. A reclining position also triggers Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD) i.e. asthma medications that activate stomach acids at night causing disruption in the lower oesophagus increasing nocturnal asthma attacks significantly.

Why Does Asthma Get Worse At Night - Sleep Position

The Surroundings At Night

The closed environment of the room greatly increases the risk of asthma attacks at night. Inhaling very cold air (from the AC) can also trigger off an attack. The indoor air contains micro organisms that can make asthma worse while sleeping. The most common reason is presence of dust mites. These mites feed on dead skin that is shed from human body while sleeping and can come in contact with humans. Certain digestive enzymes present in the mite's gut that persists in their excreta causes wheezing. If this is the case, take a look at how to get rid of mites at home.

Dampness in houses and rooms where one stays can also be harmful. Such rooms with mold, which is a form of fungus, can also be the reason for nocturnal asthma. Though it is mostly believed that fungus can grow on organic materials like wood, the reality is that it also grows on the layers of dirt that accumulates on inorganic materials like plastic.

Why Does Asthma Get Worse At Night - The Surroundings At Night

Life With Asthma

Asthma can greatly affect a patient’s quality of life. A nocturnal asthma condition can be very serious as it’s the time when one is least prepared and may not be able to get immediate medical attention. Regular vacuuming, washing bed linen in hot water and detergent, using disinfectants and keeping your pets clean should be diligently followed. It greatly helps if the patient can, over time, recognize the particular triggers and take steps to deal with nocturnal asthma more confidently.

If you are in the middle of an attack and haven't got an inhaler, take a look at how to stop an asthma attack without an inhaler.


Why Does Asthma Get Worse At Night - Life With Asthma

This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to Why Does Asthma Get Worse At Night, we recommend you visit our Diseases & secondary effects category.

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Ken Dale
What does Breo Ellipta do, how, and how long before I feel results.
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Why Does Asthma Get Worse At Night