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‘ Breathlessness that isn’t caused by exertion may be a sign of an underlying health condition,’ says respiratory specialist Dr David Simcock. It is possible to have your first asthma attack as an adult, and there are a range of triggers, from allergic reactions to respiratory infections. Once diagnosed, doctors can prescribe drugs to prevent an attack in the future. Shortness of breath can also be a sign of anaphylactic shock, which is life-threatening. Epinephrine is the antidote, and GPs can prescribe an emergency shot of this in an EpiPen. If you find that you’re out of breath after minimal exertion and you’re often tired for no reason it could mean you have a heart problem, and you should see your GP.