Asthma Trigger Control Plan
Airways of an asthmatic are very sensitive. They may react to some stimuli that can cause asthma episodes. These stimuli are called as “triggers” . The airways may become swollen, tighten up, and produce excess mucus in the presence of one or more of the triggers below. These triggers may make asthma symptoms worse or keep the patient from getting better. It is important to find out what a patient’s asthma triggers are. They should learn ways to avoid them.
Advice for Patients :
- Ask your doctor to help you find out what your triggers are.
- Ask your doctor for help in deciding which actions will help the most to reduce your asthma symptoms.
- Number each action item in order of importance. Carry out these actions first. Once you have completed these actions, move on to actions that are of lesser importance.
- Discuss the results of these efforts with your doctor.
Remember : Making these changes will help prevent asthma episodes to begin. An asthma trigger control plan is an important part of controlling asthma.
Pollens and Molds (Outdoor)
- Stay indoors during the midday and afternoon when the pollen count is high.
- Use air conditioning, if possible.
- Keep windows closed during sessions when pollen and mold are highest.
- Avoid sources of molds (wet leaves, garden debris).
- Avoid mowing the lawn, or wear a mask and eye protection
- Make your garden with tropical hedge-plants which have no or little pollen.
House Dust Mites
These are actions you should take to gain control of dust mites - but they are not essential:
- Reduce indoor humidity to less than 50%. Use a dehumidifier if needed.
- Remove carpets from your bedroom, consider a carpet-free home.
- Wash bed clothes weekly in hot water (over 550)
- Avoid stuffed toys, furniture's and furry dresses. stuffed toys can be placed in the freezer over night to kill dust mites.
- Use chemical agents to kill mites or to change mite antigens in the house. o Avoid using a vacuum or being in a room while it is being vacuumed.
- Use wet mop rather than vacuum. o If you must vacuum, one or more of the following things can be done to reduce the amount of dust you breathe in.
- Use a dust mask.
- Use a central vacuum cleaner with the collecting bag outside the home.
- Use a vacuum cleaner that has powerful suction.
Animal Dander (or flakes)
These are from the skin, hair, or feathers of all warm-blooded pets including dogs, cats, birds, and rodents). There is no such thing as an allergen-free dog. The length of a pet's hair does not matter. The allergen is in the saliva, urine, and dander.
- Remove the animal from the house or school classroom.
- If you must have a pet, keep the pet out of your bedroom at all times.
- Wash the pet weekly.
- Avoid visits to friends or relatives with pets.
- Take asthma medicine (cromolyn or b2-agonist; cromolyn is often preferred) before visiting homes or sites where animals are present.
- Choose a pet without fur or feathers (such as a fish).
- Avoid products made with feathers, for example, pillows and comforters. Also avoid pillows, bedding, and furniture stuffed with kapok (silky fibers from the seed pods of the silk-cotton tree).
- Use insect sprays; but have someone else spray when you are outside of the home.
- Air out the home for a few hours after spraying.
- Use traps.
- Do not smoke.
- Do not allow smoking in the home.
- Have household members smoke outside.
- Do not allow any smoking in your bedroom. Encourage family members to quit smoking. Their doctor can help them quit.
- Use an indoor air-cleaning device (for smoke, mold, and dander).
- Avoid using a wood burning heat stove to heat your home. The smoke increases lower respiratory symptoms.
- Avoid using kerosene heaters.
Strong Odors and Sprays
- Do not stay in your home when it is being painted. Allow enough time for the paint to dry.
- Avoid perfume and perfumed cosmetics such as talcum powder and hair spray.
- Do not use room deodorizers.
- Use non perfumed household cleaning products whenever possible.
- Reduce strong cooking odors (especially frying) by using a fan and opening windows.
- Avoid air pollution by staying indoors on days when the pollution count is high.
- Colds and Infections
- Avoid people with colds or the flu.
- Get rest, eat a balanced died, and exercise regularly.
- Do not take over-the-counter cold remedies, such as antihistamines and cough
- Keep bathrooms, kitchens, and basements well ventilated.
- Clean bathrooms, kitchens, and basements regularly.
- Do not use humidifiers.
- Use dehumidifiers for damp basement areas, with humidity level set for less than 50%. Empty and clean unit regularly.
- Work out a medicine plan with your doctor that allows you to exercise without symptoms.
- Take inhaled b2-agonist or cromolyn medicine before exercising.
- Warm up before doing exercise and cool down afterwards.
- Wear a scarf over your mouth and nose in cold weather.
- Pull a turtleneck over your nose on windy or cold days.
- Dress warmly in the winter or on windy days
Asthma and weather
A close correlation between the exacerbation of asthma and weather has long been known. Usually, some patients describe, that their asthma attacks in the full-moon. Others show the attack during the change of season. Meteorological explanation is not always clear, but it is said that exacerbation is likely to be produced when the temperature is 30C or more lower than on the previous day. In other-words, it is the sudden change of temperature rather than the degree of temperature itself to determine the possibility of the attack. In daily life it is difficult to avoid the exposure of air-temperature change, but what we can do are :
- To take the preventive drugs properly
- To take special care in the daily life
- Regulate body temperature by changing cloth accordingly
- In winter: indoor warmth should be maintained.
- In summer : avoid excessive cooling of the body in A/C room.
- Strong Odors and Sprays
- Do not stay in your home when it is being painted. Allow enough time for the paint
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