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Asthma Care
7
Spring is in the air. Unfortunately, so are the many
tree and grass pollens that cause seasonal allergies.
This can be bad news if these tiny particles cause your
asthma to fare up. But the change in seasons doesn’t
mean you need to stay indoors until next winter.
There are many ways you can limit your contact with
pollen and still enjoy the nice weather.
Take Action to Avoid Pesky Pollens
If you are allergic to pollen, you may notice that your
asthma is worse on days that are hot, dry and windy.
Your symptoms may lessen when it is rainy and
windless, because the air is not so heavy with pollen
on these days.
You can check daily pollen counts for your area at
www.aaaai.org/nab.
The National Allergy Bureau
updates the Web site daily during pollen season. Try
to stay indoors as much as you can when the count is
at higher levels. If you must be outside on those days,
wear a face mask.
Other ways you can limit your contact with pollen
include the following:
●●
Keep pollen outside. Close windows in your
home and car. If possible, use an air
conditioner set on recirculate, which not only
cools you of but also reduces how much pollen
gets inside. Avoid using window and attic fans,
which blow pollen into the house.
●●
Ask a nonallergic family member to handle
yard work, like mowing the lawn.
●●
Avoid hanging laundry outside during high
pollen counts.
●●
Shower and change your clothes after spending
time outside. This will help remove pollen from
your clothing, hair and skin.
Don’t Keep Wheezing
If you try to avoid pollen but your symptoms don’t
improve or get worse, talk with your doctor. Your
How to Survive Spring Allergy Season
doctor may want to revisit your triggers to see
if something else is causing the symptoms.
To help you feel better, your doctor may want
to change your treatment plan. He or she may
recommend new prescription medications or
immunotherapy shots, which reduce your body’s
reaction to allergens over time.
7
While science can’t yet explain why, hospital
admission sometimes increase during
thunderstorms. A combination of humidity,
pollen and mold spores, air pollution and
wind could be to blame. If a storm strikes,
have your medication on hand.
Watch for Spring Storms
An Asthma Action Plan can help you know
what to do when symptoms start up. Get
a FREE copy from our Web site. Log in at
hap.org,
then click the
My Health & Wellness
tab. Select
Disease Management
in the right-
hand column, then choose
Asthma
from the
column on the left.