Coping With Spring Asthma
Asthma has a funny way of turning your life upside down. If you watch the news or scroll through social media, you see people bursting with anticipation about spring being here. For them, spring means warmer weather, vibrant colors returning to the trees, spring cleaning and outdoor parties and activities. They are happy to say goodbye to the winter doldrums as they welcome in spring.
For you, the story is a bit different. With your asthma, spring means more danger, more attacks and more anxiety about the next attack. It means that you must be more careful about where you go and what you do to protect your health and well-being. Sometimes, you wish winter would last another month or two.
You know that spring makes your seasonal allergies worse. What are you going to do with that information? Will you stay in and stay away to protect yourself? Will you throw caution to the wind and head out into the world? Or will you venture into the world in a thoughtful, safe way? If the last choice seems like the best choice, read on.
Know Your Targets
Before you can know how to make this spring better, you must recount the events of last spring. What triggered your springtime symptoms? What did you do to address your asthma symptoms? Was it effective? What more could you have done?
These questions are not about finding or assigning blame to you or anyone else. Their goal is to help you identify what works and what doesn’t work for your asthma in spring.
Your triggers are the target. Keep them in your crosshairs so that you can limit your symptoms. Dust, pollen, dander, grass and stress are major triggers that return or flare in the spring. Think about each and their impact on your symptoms. If you are uncertain about your targets, work with your doctor to identify the main asthma contributors.
Now that you have a better understanding of your asthma and spring’s ability to change symptoms, begin thinking about the needed steps to protect yourself while maintaining the high quality of life you deserve. Here’s how:
Begin Before Spring
Some of the best measures are done when the snow still covers the ground. Schedule a pre-spring appointment with your doctor to plan and discuss the best interventions to lower your risk and improve your chances for success with asthma in spring.
Be sure to mention your goals and concerns so that your doctor can explore new interventions or remind you of your limitations. If your doctor does not accurately understand your symptoms, be sure to elaborate and check in for complete clarity.