Did you know that about 25 million people have asthma? And, this number continues to increase each year.1 If you want to help others cope with this disease, then a career in respiratory therapy could be right for you. First, check out these 3 things you might not have known about asthma:
1. Asthma is a Serious, Lifelong Disease
Asthma is a hereditary, non-curable disease that causes wheezing, shortness of breath, coughing, and tightness in the chest. It can lead to extreme attacks and even deaths. The symptoms range in severity, but can be worsened by a number of factors. Allergic reactions to dust mites, pollen, mold, pet dander, or shellfish can result in asthmatic symptoms. Irritants in the air such as cigarette smoke, pollution, perfume, or even cold air can also worsen the symptoms.1
2. It's on the Rise
In the last 10 years, the number of people who have been diagnosed with asthma has increased by 15 percent.2 Between 2001 and 2009, asthma rates rose the most among African American children, with a 50 percent increase. Adults between the ages of 18 and 24 are also more likely to develop asthma than older adults.3
3. Asthma Comes with a Cost
The medication and methods to treat asthma symptoms can be expensive. Inhaled corticosteroids, bronchodilators, nebulizers, and inhalers are pricey, but often necessary forms of treatment. In 2007, asthma cost the United States $56 billion. Between 2002 and 2007, the cost per person averaged $3,300.3 The symptoms can be uncomfortable and can even lead to an attack which might mean children and adults need to stay home from school or work to seek treatment. For example, children miss more than 10 million days of school every year because of asthma.2
Education is the first step to understanding asthma. With a career as a respiratory therapist, you could help people who suffer with the disease understand and treat their symptoms. The disease affects millions across the United States which is why employment as a respiratory therapist is projected to grow 19 percent by 2022.4 At YTI Career Institute, we provide our students with the hands-on learning opportunities needed to succeed. Learn more about a career in respiratory therapy.