Asthma is a chronic lung disease that inflames and narrows the airways, making it difficult for the sufferer to breath. Asthma causes recurring periods of wheezing (a whistling sound when you breathe), chest tightness, shortness of breath, and coughing. The coughing often occurs at night or early in the morning.
Asthma affects people of all ages, but most often starts during childhood. In the United States, more than 25 million people are known to have asthma, approximately 7 million of whom are children. There is no cure for asthma; however, asthma may be controlled through medical treatment and management of asthma triggers.