If you or a loved one has asthma, you understand the fear and uncertainty an asthma attack can cause, and you want these attacks to stop. And while it's true some children do outgrow asthma, not everyone does, so for a large percentage of asthma sufferers, there's no chance they'll wake up one morning and be asthma-free.
How Can You Minimize Asthma Attacks?
Every time we take in a breath of air, we inhale thousands of particles of pollutants, dust, pollen and other environmental contaminants. Asthmatics often have allergies to many of these pollutants, which make it much more difficult for them to handle taking a simple breath.
Identify Triggers Knowing what sets you off is the first step in controlling and minimizing asthma attacks. Keep a journal that includes all foods ingested, as well as where you were, what type of weather you are experiencing, and what you are doing when an asthma attack occurs. A detailed journal is a great reference for both you and your physician, and an excellent way to avoid recurring problems.
Keep Indoors Clean Because we spend approximately 90 percent of our time indoors, it's crucial that indoor areas are kept clear of asthma triggers. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has measured pollutants in homes and buildings to be two to five times higher than what is found outdoors. To minimize asthma attacks indoors, avoid the use of wall to wall carpet, as it traps moisture and pollutions. Change bedding regularly and use mattress bags to keep dust, dust mites, and other allergens at bay.
Choose Pets Wisely Pet dander can be horrific for asthmatics. If you must have a pet, consider adding an aquarium to your decor.
Avoid Highly Pollinated Areas The first thing you can do to help your self or your loved ones is to determine whether the area you live in is conducive to more attacks or less attacks for the asthmatics in your home. Areas of high pollen concentrations make it more difficult for asthmatics. For instance, large prominent cities such as Atlanta, Augusta, Philadelphia, Tulsa, Memphis, Milwaukee, Knoxville, Chattanooga, St. Louis and Richmond have some of the highest concentrations of pollen in the United States. If you live in one of these areas and you have asthma, it might behoove you to move.
Avoid Food Triggers Knowing what sets off an asthma attack gives you one more way to battle asthma. If ingesting cold foods sets off an asthma attack, steer clear of cold foods. If dairy products cause an asthmatic reaction, do not eat dairy. Yeast products can also cause asthma attacks in some people. Know your specific triggers and avoid them.