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I Struggle with Breathing: Is It Allergies or Asthma?

First things first — if you have problems breathing, it’s time to see an expert. 

Several things can interfere with normal breathing, and some are more serious than others. So, it’s crucial to understand what’s behind your symptoms. 

Similarly, some conditions are also closely linked, like allergies and asthma.

Our team at Respacare provides state-of-the-art pulmonary care for people 18 and older. That includes allergy and pulmonary testing to diagnose breathing disorders and provide effective treatment strategies.

Asthma and allergies are often lifelong conditions. So, understanding the source of your symptoms is key to managing them effectively.

Allergies versus asthma

Allergies and asthma have a lot in common, including the ability to affect the airway. However, they also have some significant differences.


Allergy symptoms occur when the immune system misfires and attacks something harmless, which lead to the following:

These symptoms can have numerous triggers, like pollen, mold, dust, and pet dander.


Asthma occurs when the bronchial tubes carrying air to the lungs become swollen and inflamed. When this happens, it makes it difficult to breathe, leading to wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath, and tightness in the chest.

Several things can cause asthma symptoms, including infections, stress, exercise, and breathing cold air. 

However, they’re also often due to allergies.

Allergic asthma basics

Allergic asthma affects approximately 60% of the 25 million Americans living with asthma, making it the most common form of this condition.

In many cases, allergic asthma causes the classic respiratory signs of an asthma attack. However, people often experience additional allergy symptoms as well, such as:

These symptoms range from mild to severe. But an allergen always triggers them.

Diagnosing allergies and asthma

The secret to managing allergies and asthma is to know what’s triggering your symptoms. And that’s where our team can help.

We offer diagnostic screenings, including allergy testing, pulmonary function testing, and pulmonary stress testing. These tools can help us assess your lung function and whether allergens trigger your symptoms.

Once we diagnose your condition, we can outline the most effective management strategy so you can breathe easy again.

Common treatments for allergies and asthma include avoiding triggers and using medications, like antihistamines or inhalers. Our team also offers sublingual immunotherapy and allergy injections to provide lasting relief against specific allergens.

Finally, since these are often lifelong conditions, it’s important to work with our expert  team you can trust. We can provide personalized recommendations and modify your treatment strategy as needed over time to manage your breathing disorder effectively.

Are you having problems breathing? Let our Respacare team get to the source of your symptoms. Contact our office by phone or online to book a visit in Bridgewater, New Jersey, today.

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