reviewed 8/5/2019

TAMING ASTHMA TRIGGERS

LOWER YOUR LIKELIHOOD OF FLARE-UPS

An asthma trigger is something that causes a flare-up of symptoms. Select a trigger for tips on how to control it.

SMOKE

TO CONTROL IT:

  • Ban smoking from your home and car.
  • Avoid burning wood indoors.
  • Don't go outdoors when wildfires are burning nearby.

AIR POLLUTION

TO CONTROL IT:

  • Check air quality daily at stateoftheair.org.
  • Limit time outdoors when the index is high.
  • Avoid exercising near heavily trafficked areas.

PETS

TO CONTROL IT:

  • Avoid pets with fur or feathers.
  • If possible, keep pets outdoors.
  • Keep pets out of bedrooms.

MOLD AND MILDEW

TO CONTROL IT:

  • Fix leaks right away.
  • Clean mildew from tiles and shower.
  • Run exhaust fans or open windows in your kitchen and bathroom.

POLLEN

TO CONTROL IT:

  • Close doors and windows during pollen season.
  • Limit time outdoors when pollen levels are high.
  • Shower and change clothes after coming in from outdoors.

RESPIRATORY INFECTION

TO CONTROL IT:

  • Wash your hands often.
  • Avoid sick people.
  • Get a flu shot every year.
  • Ask your doctor about getting a pneumonia shot.

STRONG ODORS

TO CONTROL IT:

  • Use unscented products.
  • Avoid areas with strong smells.
  • Use a fan around strong odors.

STRONG EMOTIONS

TO CONTROL IT:

  • Avoid stressful situations.
  • Learn relaxation exercises and techniques.

COLD AIR/EXTREME HEAT

TO CONTROL IT:

  • Wear a scarf over your mouth and nose when outdoors.
  • Avoid being outside when the weather is too cold or too hot.

EXERCISE

TO CONTROL IT:

  • Ask your doctor about using a rescue inhaler or other quick-relief medications before exercising.
  • Warm up before exercise.
  • Exercise indoors when air quality outside is poor.

DUST MITES OR COCKROACHES

TO CONTROL IT:

  • Encase bedding in dust or mite-proof coverings.
  • Remove carpeting and dust and vacuum twice a week.
  • Keep food in sealed containers.

Learn more by taking our asthma triggers quiz.

Take the quiz.

Sources: American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology; American Lung Association

Related stories
Disclaimer

This information is provided for educational purposes only. Individuals should always consult with their healthcare providers regarding medical care or treatment, as recommendations, services or resources are not a substitute for the advice or recommendation of an individual's physician or healthcare provider. Services or treatment options may not be covered under an individual's particular health plan.