Chronic respiratory diseases are diseases that affect the airways and structures of the lung. Chronic means a condition that is an ongoing and long-term, as opposed to acute conditions which often come on suddenly and can be severe. Chronic conditions sometimes begin in childhood and can take decades to become fully established. This means there are multiple opportunities to try and prevent them.
While the symptoms might feel the same – blocked, runny nose, sneezing, reduced sense of smell and nasal irritation - the causes of allergic and persistent (also called non-allergic) rhinitis are very different.
Asthma is a common condition affecting roughly one in every 11 people in the UK or one in five households. Of the 5.4 million people with asthma in this country, 4.3 million are adults and 1.1 million are children.