Asthma during the winter
More than 17 million adults and 6 million children suffer with asthma in the U.S. The lifelong breathing disorder causes wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness and coughing – leading to 18 million emergency department visits per year.
The winter can be particularly tough for people with asthma for several reasons.
· Cold weather triggers asthma attacks.
· The cold and flu aggravate asthma symptoms.
· Staying indoors more increases exposure to triggers like dust and mold.
· Cold medicine can interfere with asthma.
If you or a loved one has asthma, take these precautions during the winter.
· Wear a scarf over your mouth and nose when going outside.
· Breathe in through the nose and out through the mouth when outdoors in the cold.
· Exercise indoors when possible – physical activity can strengthen the lungs.
· Keep indoor areas clean, regulate the humidity and minimize dust.
· Take all medications as prescribed to you by your doctor, even if you feel fine.
· Practice proper hand-washing frequently.
· Drink plenty of fluids
If your kid has asthma:
· Make sure your child knows their triggers, symptoms of an asthma attack and their asthma attack action plan.
· Discuss your child’s asthma action plan with the school nurse.
Importantly, if you have been prescribed a rescue inhaler for asthma, always carry it with you.
Learn more about Adventist HealthCare’s Respiratory and Pulmonary services.
Find more family health tips and resources at www.AdventistHealthCare.com/NurseRose.