Asthma is a condition which one cannot get fully cured of. The only option is to accept the fact that you have to live with it and live fully! Here are some simple tips to help asthmatics lead a fuller life:
1. Get rid of dust: Dust, due to its allergy-inducing properties, causes havoc for asthmatics. Therefore it’s absolutely essential that very high levels of hygiene are maintained and that rooms are kept dust-free. This can be achieved by thoroughly vacuuming the entire room including every nook and cranny.
2. Keep the fungi away: Hygienic conditions need to be maintained. Especially damp corners because they are breeding grounds for fungal growth.
3. Kick the butt: Smoking not only triggers asthma attacks but is seen as one of the major sources which causes asthma among children. Even passive smoking affects asthma as much as first-hand smoking. It’s imperative to provide a clean and healthy environment for the entire family and that means one’s dwelling should be completely smoke-free.
4. Flower Power? No thanks: Pollen from flowers is a known trigger for asthma attacks and one will do well to avoid them. Maybe say it with some chocolates.
5. Avoid the kitchen: The smoke and aromas given off when cooking can be a major irritant to asthma sufferers so take steps to reduce such problems. If a proper exhaust fan or chimney is not available, then ensure there is an open window in the kitchen to help the cooking smells to escape outside.
6. Pet peeve: Animal lovers are going to the find the going tough. Research suggest that contact with cats or dogs is extremely dangerous for asthmatics not to mention the fact that small pieces of fur, particles of hair, saliva and even skin are all known asthma triggers. Even if the pet is not physically around you, their fur/hair might be in your environment and may pose risks.
7. Breathe clean air: Make sure your air conditioners are serviced regularly. If you are using them after a long break, make sure they are serviced before you switch them on. If your job requires you to travel in polluted areas, do cover your face with a mask.
8. Exercise: Contrary to popular belief, asthmatics should exercise. In fact it’s the best strategy to manage asthma as it increases your lung capacity. However, one should always consult a physician before starting any exercise regime and keep one’s medication in hand.
9. Don’t neglect that cold: Common cold has been shown to precipitate an attack of asthma. So, try to avoid catching cold. Wash your hands often. Choose to say namaste instead of shaking hands. If you do catch one, take good care of it and make sure you recover fast.
10. Inhaler dos and don’ts: Always carry your inhaler in your bag. Do check the dose counter on your inhaler regularly (if it has one) so you know when to get a new one in good time. Always keep a spare inhaler. Ask your doctor to teach you how to use the inhaler correctly.
11. Get your nutritional supplements: Vitamin E, C, magnesium and omega 3 fatty acids have been shown by research to reduce the inflammation that contributes to asthma. Do ask your doctor if you need to take them.
12. Drink water at regular intervals: Water has been shown to reduce the secretions in asthma thus preventing attacks. Take your 8-10 glasses per day seriously.
13. Meet your doctor regularly: It doesn’t matter if your asthma is under control or not, do meet your doctor regularly. Share your doctor’s number with close friends and relatives in case of emergency.
14. No stress: Stress has been shown to trigger attacks. So, do whatever acts as a stress-buster for you – be it meditation, movies, music, friends or playing with kids.
Following these simple measures will greatly reduce the frequency and severity of asthma attacks. Prevention is the best option for asthma and the seriousness of this condition should not be taken lightly as attacks can lead to death in extreme cases. Take action to control your own asthma and breathe easier starting today.First Published: Jul 2, 2012 at 1:38 AM