THIS SUMMER, TAKE CARE OF YOUR ASTHMA

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Asthma is a seasonal disease. Winters and rainfall are the two seasons in which asthma clinics are full of patients. But it doesn’t mean that people with asthma will be symptom free in summer. Summer also can bring woes to asthmatics. So, let’s see what are the links between extreme heat and summer asthma attack.

OZONE:

A combination of extreme heat, sunlight and air-pollution can increase ozone levels. Ozone is a known asthma trigger.

HUMIDITY:

When there is extreme heat, there is also often extreme humidity. This is especially true in cities like Chennai. The humid conditions provide the perfect environment for dust mites and molds to thrive.

POLLEN:

Because of heat, you are more likely to open house windows that increase your exposure to pollens. In India pollen allergy is commonly seen to parthenium, a common weed found in majority of country side.

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THUNDER STORMS:

Higher winds that occur during a big storm increase fungal spores in the air. Some studies have shown that the thunderstorms may increase emergency department visits for asthma by more than 15%. So, what can we do to reduce asthma symptoms in summer?

  1. First and foremost, don’t forget to take your regular asthma medicines thinking that asthma symptoms won’t occur in summer.
  2. The second is to always carry your rescue inhaler. You never know when you may have a problem or what sort of trigger you may encounter as a result of extreme heat.
  3. Thirdly, shower. Showering after coming back inside will reduce allergen and other trigger exposures that you bring back into your home. Additionally, you can decrease home allergen exposure by cleaning your clothes in your laundry room and brushing off your shoes.

STAY INDOORS:

While exercise is important and many of us love to get outdoors, extreme heat can lead to exacerbation. If you need to go outside, avoid the hot parts of the day. Make sure to avoid smokers and stay far away from heavily congested city roads.

USE AIR CONDITIONERS:

On coutrary to what we think, air conditioners reduce humidity inside the room and reduce the molds and dust mites. But make sure to clean the outdoor and indoor units and also the filters regularly.

STAY AWAY FROM BOTTLED DRINKS:

Instead of drinking artificial drinks, have plenty of fruits, fresh fruit juices, tender coconut and buttermilk. Keep yourself well hydrated.