Asthma is a chronic disease. With asthma, breathing is sometimes difficult due to these changes in the lungs:
- Swelling of the lining in the airways
- Tightening of the muscles around the airways (a spasm)
- Extra mucus in the airways
Asthma is not contagious. It is a lifelong disease which can be controlled with daily medications. Although asthma is a chronic disease, anyone with asthma can have an acute (sudden) attack of symptoms.