Inhaled allergies are the most common types of allergies. Here the allergens enter the body via the air the mucous membranes and lead to an increase in the IgE concentration, which indicates the allergy level. There is a seasonal allergen source (pollen from trees, grasses and herbs) that play a role, as well as indoor allergens (house dust mites, domestic animals and mould spores) which can occur throughout the year.
What are the common asthma triggers?
- Cigarette smoke
- Strong cleaning products, such as bleach
- Strong perfumes or scents
- Air pollution
- Very cold and dry air
People can have other triggers, too. These include things in the environment that they are allergic to. These are called “allergic triggers.” Examples of allergic triggers are:
- Dust mites
- Mold – Mold can grow in basements, showers, and other damp and wet places.
- Dogs and cats – People can be allergic to animal saliva, urine, or dander (flakes of dead skin).
- Pollen from trees, grass, and weeds
- Cockroach droppings
How do I know what my asthma triggers are?
You might already know what makes your asthma symptoms worse. But if you don’t, talk with your doctor or nurse. They can help you figure it out by talking with you and asking you questions.
Your doctor might do allergy tests to see if you have allergic triggers. Allergy tests include blood tests or skin tests. If you get a blood test and it shows that you have an elevated IgE that could mean you are an allergic patient.
What should I do when I find out what my triggers are?
The best thing to do is to stay away from your triggers. For example, if cigarette smoke makes your asthma symptoms worse, you need to avoid people who are smoking. If you smoke, get help to quit.
Here are other things that you can do:
- To avoid getting sick with an infection, wash your hands often. You can also get a flu shot every year so you don’t get the flu. Some people also need to get a vaccine to help prevent pneumonia.
- To avoid air pollution, stay indoors when air pollution levels are high, and don’t exercise near a busy road.
- On winter days when the air is cold and dry, cover your mouth and nose with a mask.
Avoid using bleach and other strong cleaners.
What if I can’t avoid my triggers?
If you can’t avoid your triggers, talk with your doctor or nurse about what you can do.
Exercise is an example of a trigger that you should not avoid, because exercise keeps you healthy. To prevent asthma symptoms when you exercise:
- Take an extra dose of your quick-relief inhaler medicine before you exercise
- Warm up slowly before each exercise session
- Avoid exercising outdoors if it is very cold out
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