The hot summer months are when allergy and asthma sufferers have the most flare-ups.
It turns out the more time you spend indoors, the more you are breathing in dangerous indoor allergens, such as dust mites (which multiply when you turn up the heat), animal dander and mold meaning asthma patients actually need more medication during cold winter months.
“There are two challenges for people with asthma in the winter. One is that they spend more time inside. The other is that it’s cold outside,” says Dr. Louis Mariotti.
Below, you’ll find some winter asthma challenges and some winter asthma tips on how to breathe a little bit more freely.
Regardless of how often you clean your house, dust will always be present. House dust is a mixture of particles that comes from just about everywhere — outside soil, hair, dust mites, insect waste — you name it.
And, yes, you are breathing that all in which are asthma triggers.
Here are a few house-cleaning tips:
- Encase your pillows, mattress and box springs with allergen-impermeable slip covers to lock out dust mites
- Wash your bedding in hot water every seven days
- If possible, replace carpeting with hardwood floors or tiles
- Vacuum frequently using a high-efficiency particulate air filter (HEPA)
- Keep the humidity inside your house at less than 40 to 45 percent
- We know this one is hard but having a dog or cat in your home may trigger your asthma. Try to keep them out of the bedroom.
- Candles and incense are often used during the winter months, and they can trigger allergy symptoms. Try using soy or beeswax candles.
Often we feel more stressed in the winter months, which definitely plays a role in asthma symptoms. If you are feeling stressed, your respiratory passages can tighten, which can trigger an asthma attack. If this is the case, try coping with yoga or meditation. Also, exercise indoors. Working out at a gym inside is a much better idea or for you mall lovers, it’s a good reason to
To protect yourself from asthma flare-ups due to chilly weather cover your face Drape a scarf across your mouth and nose, or wear a winter face mask that covers the bottom half of your face.