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How does a person get asthma?

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Quick Answer

People are more likely to get asthma if they live in polluted or urban areas or have smokers living with them, according to WebMD. Those who have a history of allergies or have family members with asthma are at higher risk of developing the condition as well.

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Adults may develop asthma after experiencing mild, intermittent attacks as children yet growing up undiagnosed, according to Everyday Health. Females going through their childbearing years are more likely to get asthma as well, because changes in their bodies could cause asthma to develop during or right after pregnancy. Those who develop asthma as adults might have had long bouts of sinus infections or nasal allergies that evolve to include breathing problems over a period of time.

People can develop asthma attacks due to varying triggers, reports Medical News Today. When a person with sensitive airways encounters allergens, a reaction that leads to asthma can occur. Common allergens include animal dander, pollen, house dust and cigarette smoke. Allergens contain chemicals that cause the lining in airways to become inflamed, according to Medical News Today. The lining then produces extra mucus, pushing muscles in the airway to tighten and restrict the amount of air that can pass through. Asthma attacks tend to occur more with those who have chest infections.

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