May is Allergy & Asthma Awareness Month. Knowing the difference between allergies and asthma can help you identify symptoms when they arrive, and help you figure out the best way to manage and treat them.


Allergies are caused by your body’s reaction to a substance like pollen, specific foods, or sometimes medicines. These reactions can vary by person, and could result in anything from a sneeze to a severe internal reaction.

Treatment for allergies varies just as much as symptoms. For slight seasonal allergies, over-the-counter medications are great for quick relief. More severe allergic reactions may require attention from a medical professional.


Asthma is a chronic condition which affects the lungs and can make it difficult to breathe. Often, asthma symptoms appear during a flare up (“attack”) after you have been active or exposed to something you may be allergic to. Unlike allergies, asthma is genetic and is usually diagnosed by a doctor.

Asthma is controlled under the instruction of a doctor, who may prescribe both short term treatments (like an inhaler to alleviate symptoms) and long term treatments (like medications which help to reduce the regularity and severity of symptoms occurring).

Article by Jase Lucas / Sales & Marketing Coordinator at Byrd-Watson

Medical Advice by Abby Butler, CRT / Respiratory Therapist at Byrd-Watson Medical Equipment

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