Surviving Winter with Asthma and Asthma First Aid

With winter clearly in the air, that bitter chill is a reminder to assess how well you are and ensure you and those around you are prepared for Asthma flare ups.

Asthma is a chronic condition of the airways. Known triggers such as, exercise, cigarette smoke, colds, flu, and allergens in the air (e.g. grass pollen) can cause the airways of those with asthma to narrow resulting in difficulty in breathing.

Asthma can usually be treated with medications known as inhalers but severe attacks of airway narrowing can require emergency help and be life-threatening.

Asthma cannot be cured but the condition can be managed to reduce the risk of asthma attacks and reduce the severity. Winter can be troublesome for those with asthma due to high number of colds and flu’s around. In regards to COVID all that is known so far is that those with asthma may be at risk of a more serious COVID infection compared to those without a chronic medical condition.

With this in mind, Heroes Home Doctor recommend you do the following;

  1. Avoid illnesses: Wash hands regularly, maintain social distancing, avoid others who are unwell and be vaccinated for flu
  2. Ensure your asthma is well controlled:

Make an appointment with us to discuss your asthma, understand your triggers and symptoms, check your inhaler technique, ensure you are on the correct medication for optimal control and review your Asthma Management Plan.

  • Ensure those around you know you have asthma and they know asthma first aid – see below

Asthma First Aid.

Recognising an asthma attack and acting fast can be life saving.

Signs of an asthma attack:

Increased wheeze, coughing, chest tightness or shortness of breath
Increased use of reliever inhaler especially within 3 hours

Signs it is an Asthma Emergency:

If any of the below are occurring – CALL AN AMBULANCE IMMEDIATELY
CALL 000 – SAY IT’S AN ASTHMA EMERGENCY

Wheeze, cough, shortness of breath and chest tightness are getting worse quickly
Unable to comfortably talk
Lips looking blue
No relief from reliever inhaler