Spring Can Trigger Asthma: 5 Helpful Tips to Keep Your Symptoms in Check

Asthma Medical Alliance of Southern New Jersey

There’s nothing quite as lovely as cherry trees blooming against a backdrop of a deep blue sky. But, if that view is likely to come with an asthma attack, you might be willing to skip it!

If your allergies trigger your asthma, you’re probably interested in the best ways to keep your symptoms in check. Here are five tips to help you manage this spring.

1. Talk to us about developing an allergy treatment plan

If you have asthma, you may already have an allergy treatment plan. Now is a good time to review it and make changes if necessary. If you don’t have an allergy treatment plan, our staff is happy to help you develop one designed to work for your specific situation.

Typically, your allergy treatment plan contains information on when you should start taking medication — before allergy season begins is best — and information about what kinds of medications are likely to work best for you.

You may want to consider an immunotherapy treatment plan, as well. Immunotherapy is sometimes called allergy shots, and depending on the severity of your symptoms, it may be the best way to protect yourself from reactions.

2. Control pollen in your house

While you may not be able to do anything about the pollen count outside, there are some steps you can take to limit how much pollen there is in your home. For example, although fresh air is nice when warm days arrive after a long, chilly winter, keeping your windows closed is probably the best way to keep pollen outside.

You may want to start taking your shoes off before entering your house, as well.

When it comes to your bedroom, there are several things you can do:

3. Limit your time outdoors, and protect yourself outside

When your allergen is at its peak, you should limit how much time you spend outside. Of course, it’s not practical for most people to stay inside for days or weeks at a time. There are a few things you can do to protect yourself.

You can try to avoid the peak pollen times. For most allergens that’s 5am-10am and then again at dusk. Breezy days are worse than calm days for people who have allergies.

Use a scarf or hat to cover your hair while you’re outside. If pollen gets in your hair, you end up carrying it around with you all day. You may also want to wear sunglasses to help protect your eyes.

Use the recirculate air setting on your car’s air conditioning system. This limits your exposure to outside air and therefore to pollen.

4. Do your laundry

You probably already do your laundry regularly, but there are a few specific things you can do that may help you control your symptoms during peak pollen season.

Use a dryer, or hang your clothes inside to dry them, instead of using an outdoor clothesline. Fresh, line-dried sheets may seem like a wonderful idea, but they could be an allergic reaction and asthma attack in the making.

Wash your bedding every week, and use hot water. This helps make sure that any pollen that’s somehow made it to your bed is eradicated.

If you’ve been outdoors, change clothes when you come back inside. If you’ve been doing something like gardening or mowing the lawn, or if your allergies are particularly bad, wash your outdoor clothes right away.

5. Consider filters

If you have carpet, you may want to invest in a vacuum with a HEPA filter to trap allergens. Central heat and air systems should also have HEPA filters.

You may want to consider using an indoor air purifier as well. A review of multiple studies found that air filtration can help improve outcomes for people who have respiratory issues, such as asthma, related to allergies. There are many types of air filtration devices available, and our staff can help you determine what may work best for you.

If you’d like to learn more about the association between asthma and allergies, or you’d like to review or create a treatment plan, book an appointment at Medical Alliance of Southern New Jersey. Our online scheduling tool is simple and easy to use, or you’re welcome to give us a call and we can set up an appointment for you.

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