Millions of people are suffering from asthma and those numbers are continuing to climb. The drastic numbers were released in a new report by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Asthma will affect 29 million Americans at some point in their life, note the CDC. Asthma affects nearly 19 million adults and those dramatic numbers trickle down to the number of children with asthma. In 2010, approximately 10 million were diagnosed with asthma during their lifetime while seven million, which is a 9.4 percent of the child population, children were still suffering from asthma.
While the rates of many other diseases, like most types of cancer, are decreasing, asthma rates are increasing. The decade between 2001 and 2010 saw asthma rates increase by nearly 15 percent. In 2009 alone, there were 3,400 asthma-related deaths with close to 480,000 asthma-related hospital visits. An additional 1.9 emergency department visits were related to asthma.
Asthma impacts daily life and missed days of work and school due to asthma number in the millions. According to the CDC, in 2008 alone, 14.2 million days of work and 10.5 million days of school were missed due to school. Asthma was estimated to have cost America $56 billion in 2007.
Asthma affects nearly one in 12 Americans, note the CDC, and many asthma patients come from low-income environments. Asthma was more prevalent in children than adults and affected more African-Americans, Alaska Native persons, American Indian and multiple-race people than White Americans.
Asian persons were the racial group least affected by asthma, with only 5.2 percent rate of asthma prevalence. The rate for asthma prevalence for multiple-race people was at 14.1 percent, African-Americans at 11.2 percent, American Indian or Alaska Native at 9.4 percent and White Americans at 7.7 percent.
For Hispanic groups, rate of asthma prevalence was highest among Puerto Ricans at 14.1 percent than Mexicans at 5.4 percent. Rate of asthma prevalence for all Hispanic groups was second-lowest among all racial groups at around 6 percent.
Unfortunately no one understands why asthma rates are increasing or why asthma develops. Science has long proven that asthma is affected by allergens, air pollution and exercise to name a few and there are many ways to treat and manage asthma symptoms. Despite these best efforts, asthma rates are soaring and are at their highest levels ever.