As the temperature rises, people with asthma might have difficulty breathing because of the increased heat and humidity. As the body tries to cool off, it uses more oxygen, which makes the lungs work harder. Learning how to manage your asthma in this heat will help you breathe easier during the summer.
Here are some of the tips you can use to keep in control of your asthma during these warm months:
Make sure you have enough inhalers. Check their expiration dates and if they still have medication. Some inhalers have a dose counter where you can inspect the amount of medication left. But for those who don’t have a dose counter, you can remove the canister from the inhaler and shake it to make sure it still has plenty of medication.
If you know what triggers your asthma, then you’ll be able to know the situations you need to avoid. Some common triggers in the summer months are cold air in the evenings and smoke from BBQ parties or wooden fires.
During the summer, many people spend time with family and friends or travel away from home. However, try to avoid going out when the weather is hot and humid. It may trigger asthma symptoms like coughing and shortness of breath. If you have to go out, then check the weather forecast first. Make sure to pack your asthma travel pack with your inhalers and all your necessary medications.
Whether you are on the beach, at the mall, or at a friend’s house, make sure that you have your inhalers, spacers, or mask with you. You can put it in your bag or somewhere noticeable. Make sure that your family and friends know where they are placed as well so that they can easily find them during emergencies.
If you’re going somewhere far or someplace that is unfamiliar to you for the summer, make sure to research the nearest healthcare facility. If you’re with your loved ones, tell them as well so that they’ll know where to go should you be having an asthma attack.
The summer months can intensify environmental factors such as pollen or pollution. Bad air quality can make people with asthma vulnerable to breathing difficulties and asthma attacks. Before going out, check your area’s local pollen count and local air quality health index. If there is poor air quality or a high pollen count, it may be best to stick to indoor activities.
If your asthma is getting worse in the summer season or is triggered by the hot and humid weather, then talk to your doctor about it. He can recommend the right asthma treatment that works for you so you’ll be able to breathe comfortably all summer long.
Dr. Paul Jantzi is a board-certified allergist in the Brazos Valley region. He provides different treatments and allergy tests to clients at numerous locations in the south-central Texas region. You can visit him at his office locations or call their contact numbers to set up an appointment.