Living in the South means beautiful scenery, sunny beaches, and the threat of hurricanes. We are currently in hurricane season, which is from Month to Month. Severe weather can be dangerous already, but those with asthma also have to be aware of thunderstorm asthma.

 

What Is Thunderstorm Asthma?

Thunderstorm asthma occur when severe asthma causes asthma exacerbations. Severe weather can worsen asthma triggers for those with allergic asthma. This is due to pollen grains being broken up into smaller pieces by the rain. These small pieces of pollen are then spread around by the severe wind. Small bits of pollen in the wind are easily inhaled into the lungs, causing asthma exacerbations.

Other Triggers to Watch

Once severe weather has passed, you still must remain alert for other asthma or allergy triggers. These triggers can include mold, pollen, and chemicals hiding in piles of debris and downed trees. To avoid trigger exposure, it is best to wear a mask and gloves when outdoors, as well as to change your clothes as soon as you are inside once again. Burning debris can irritate your asthma due to the smoke and toxic materials irritating your airways.

How To Prepare for Severe Weather

Preparing for thunderstorm asthma is important. When preparing for severe weather, like a hurricane, it is important to add your medications to the hurricane supplies you prepare. Make sure you have enough medication for several days, a portable, battery-powered nebulizer if you use one, insurance cards, and pharmacy and doctor contact information. It is important you know and/or have copies of you Asthma Action plan, and that those around you know what to do in case of an emergency.

If you do not have an Asthma Action Plan, a Board Certified allergist at National Allergy & ENT can help you create one designed to meet your needs. To schedule an appointment please call (843) 212-7976 or schedule online.

 

Source: Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America