4 Tips to Manage Your Asthma During the Winter

When the air gets colder and the temperature drops, it is often difficult for those who suffer from asthma to keep their condition under control. The cold air causes the body to increase mucus production. At the same time, the dryness of the air irritates the airways. The combination results in breathing difficulty. Luckily, there are a few things that you can do this winter to reduce your risk of asthma attacks while also managing your asthma symptoms.

Tip #1: Get Your Flu Shot

As soon as it is available, get the flu shot. If you end up getting the flu, it will cause your asthma symptoms to be much more severe because the virus causes congestion and affects your breathing. The vaccine does not protect you from every flu strain out there, but it does reduce your overall chances of contracting it. While you are at the office getting the shot, ask your asthma doctor about any other precautions you can take.

Tip #2: Exercise Inside

Due to the fact that the cold air irritates your airways, you will want to switch from exercising outside to exercising inside, especially on particularly cold days. Otherwise, you are increasing your chances for an asthma attack. You can opt to exercise inside the comfort of your own home, or you can purchase a gym membership for the wintertime. The warm air and higher humidity levels will be a lot easier on your respiratory system, but it is recommended that you carry your inhaler with you as a precautionary measure.

Tip #3: Eliminate Home Allergens

During the winter, you will keep your doors and windows closed. As a result, dust, dirt, and other small particles will circulate through the air in your home, exacerbating your asthma symptoms. To improve your breathing and reduce the risk of an asthma attack, take steps to eliminate these allergens from the home. Get your carpets cleaned, change the filters in your HVAC system, and purchase an air purifier.

Tip #4: See a Specialist

One of the best ways to manage your asthma symptoms is to talk to an allergy specialist. Let him or her know how frequent your attacks are, what your most frequent asthma triggers are, and so on. This type of information will help him or her develop a wintertime management plan and even adjust your asthma medications so that you can make it through the winter with minimal symptoms and attacks.