THE INS AND OUTS
Asthma is caused by inflammation of the breathing tubes that carry air in and out of the lungs.
The reasons people develop asthma are still not fully understood but what is certain is you are more likely to have asthma if a close relative also has the condition.
Although asthma attacks can occur randomly, they are often sparked by triggers such as allergens — common ones include house mites, animal fur or pollen.
Other triggers include cold air, exercise, chest infections and irritants such as cigarette smoke or even strong smells.
There is no cure for asthma but there are effective treatments to keep the condition under control.