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#1571 - 08/30/01 10:32 AM Considerations for asthmatics
shoude Offline
avid diver

Registered: 08/30/01
Posts: 10
Loc: Mansfield, MA, USA
After much research, doctor discussions, and angst, I've decided to pursue certification. If it's something that I enjoy, I would prefer to purchase my own equipment. It seems like the BIO split fin would benefit me with less exsertion. What about high-performance regulators? Are there regulators which require less effort and exsertion? Are there any other considerations for asthmatics? Thanks!

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#1572 - 08/30/01 01:21 PM Re: Considerations for asthmatics
Sara Offline
avid diver

Registered: 08/26/01
Posts: 14
Loc: Boynton Beach, Florida
My husband is an asthma person and Ive been trying to get him to dive for years without success. His problem is not with breathing but clearing his ears once he descends. Before you dive and spend a lot of money in classes and gear and panic attacks. I would recommend to snorkel or just go in a pool and dive to the bottom. See how your ears can handle this. Blow gently on your nose while holding it. This is the method to clear your ears when you dive this is done every couple of feet. If you have a problem with THIS - your first dive might be a bummer. You wouldnt want to spend hundreds of dollars on a class and the first dive find out its not for you. Many people have jumped into diving and done this. I am sorry to hear they had such a bad time but always happy to buy their new gear.!!! P.S. My doctor is against me diving too, SO WHAT.

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#1573 - 08/30/01 02:16 PM Re: Considerations for asthmatics
Liquid Offline
avid diver

Registered: 08/24/01
Posts: 11
Loc: Atlit Israel
Todays regulator are called "Demand" regulator, becouse they deliver air on deman, which means a little effort is needed. how ever, there is very little effort involved, and in the more sensitive models, with the higher delivary capeabilitys you get so much air you dont feel any effort at all in your behalf. I could recommend several models, but the simpler thing would be to go to a shop and simply try out some. It will deliver air in water usualy as easy as it delivers on land.

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#1574 - 09/03/01 07:58 PM Re: Considerations for asthmatics
BrianO Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/04/01
Posts: 289
Loc: Irvine
Beware that asthma is not to be taken lightly as a condition especially when going underwater. Anyone with asthma should be evaluated by a physician trained in hyperbaric medicine. It is not an automatic precluder from the sport, and some types of asthma even benefit from the highly filtered dry air. Most of the time, if it's not induced by exercise, it is not a problem. However, underwater is no place to be if breathing becomes labored, difficult, or life threatening. One can't emphasize enough the importance of a physicians evaluation and release, which is also a requirement by any certifying agency prior to an asthmatic beginning a class.

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#1575 - 09/04/01 08:19 AM Re: Considerations for asthmatics
shoude Offline
avid diver

Registered: 08/30/01
Posts: 10
Loc: Mansfield, MA, USA
Thank you Brian. I've done considerable research on the issue and have discussed it with my doctor at great lengths. I'm aware of the risk associated with asthma and scuba. I made the decision to get certified based on due diligence. I find your recommendation of getting checked out by a specialist in hyperbaric medicine interesting. Would this provide better information than my own pulmonary specialist? If so, can I get a referral thruogh DAN?

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#1576 - 09/05/01 09:13 PM Re: Considerations for asthmatics
BrianO Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/04/01
Posts: 289
Loc: Irvine
Glad to hear of your efforts to dive safely. DAN would be the perfect place to refer to for a hyperbaric physician in your area. No new information may come forth, but it can't hurt to check it out.

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#1577 - 09/07/01 11:20 AM Re: Considerations for asthmatics
Sara Offline
avid diver

Registered: 08/26/01
Posts: 14
Loc: Boynton Beach, Florida
Didn't mean to be a jerk and above all we DO want to dive safely. Asking a Doctor if you should dive or a moderator, who is an instructor, will always bring a no or watch out answer. Due to "THE LIABILITY" factor, she said, he said thing, not my fault. Before you buy equipment think about renting, you can get some nice stuff. If you jump in take the course and decide to pack it in you won't own equipment. Also for safety I limit my dives to under 65 ft. for my special condition. At 2 atmospheres of pressure I believe your lungs are squished to 50% Don't quote me on this. See book "Trailside Guide - Scuba Diving" and other references on the physiology of diving at Amazon.com. This guide also has a section How to chose equipment like B.C.s.

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#1578 - 09/07/01 11:47 AM Re: Considerations for asthmatics
shoude Offline
avid diver

Registered: 08/30/01
Posts: 10
Loc: Mansfield, MA, USA
Thanks Sara. I have the Trailside Guide. I've found the book to be pretty informative. My doctor and I discussed the liability issue and she understood the implications of signing off on the medical release. The doctor was very comfortable with my asthmatic condition and felt it was in no way a contraindication. Point made - each person's case is different and prospective divers should consult their own physician. BTW - how long have you been diving? Thanks again.

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#1579 - 09/07/01 08:33 PM Re: Considerations for asthmatics
BrianO Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/04/01
Posts: 289
Loc: Irvine
Hey Sara,
No jerks in this crowd at all. As a matter of fact, when in a room of people, I am usually the most likely to get injured somehow. I have learned through all my adventures to the E.R. that to err on the side of caution gives me a better chance of enjoying not only the activity but also its outcome. When a variable is thrown into the equation, it should receive its' deserved consideration.
I have taught many poeple with asthma to dive that have no restrictions on their depth, time, or frequency. I am always glad to bring someone into the the world of diving. My preference is also to dive with people that are properly trained to handle emergency situations. What if something does happen to me? I can't always rescue myself.
Glad to hear that you're out there and enjoying it. Stay wet

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#1580 - 09/13/01 02:27 PM Re: Considerations for asthmatics
Sara Offline
avid diver

Registered: 08/26/01
Posts: 14
Loc: Boynton Beach, Florida
I HAVE BEEN DIVING FOR 5 YEARS ACTIVELY BUT HAVE BEEN CERTIFIED SINCE 1981. A GOOD POINT TOO IS THAT YOU HAVE TO BE PREPARED TO SAVE YOUR BUDDY. I DOVE WITH A BROKEN ANKLE RECENTLY AND GOT THROWN IN WITH A NOVICE DIVER, HIS SECOND TIME?? HE DIDNT HOLD ON TO THE ROPE THERE WAS A 3 KT CURRENT AND OFF HE WENT. I FELT BAD, LITTLE I COULD DO WITH A BROKEN ANKLE AND CAST ON AND I DIDN'T HAVE A FLAAAG. GEE! HE WAS SUPPOSE TO SAVE ME? IN CASE I GOT INTO TROUBLE. A SQUALL CAME UP THE DUMMY WENT TO THE BOTTOM FOR 20 MINUTES BY HIMSELF. DISAPPEARED, WE ALL THOUGHT HE WAS DEAD, HIS WIFE AND KIDS ARE FREAKING. NEEDLESS TO SAY WE FOUND HIM BY USING THE GPS TO GET THE ORIGINAL FIX AND WORKING DOWN CURRENT WITH THE BOAT. FINALLY HE CAME UP ABOUT A 1/4 MILE AWAY. SORRY I GOT SIDE TRACKED THINKING OF HOW YOU REALLY SHOULD BE IN GOOD PHYSICAL SHAPE. I LEARNED A SCARRY LESSON.
ANYWAY JUST KEEP YOUR VENTOLIN OR WHATEVER HANDY. WHEN SOMEONE TELLS ME "NO" I ALWAYS LOOK AT THE SOURCE OF WHO IS SAYING NO. JUST THINK IF ARTHUR ASHE AND JACKIE JOYNER KERSEY WOULD HAVE SAID "OH, I CAN'T PLAY TENNIS... BECAUSE..." OR "I CAN'T RUN...BECAUSE... WHAT WOULD THEY HAVE MISSED?? A REALLY GREAT TIME. KNOW THYSELF.

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