Managing Common Asthma Triggers

Knowing what causes your asthma symptoms and limiting your exposure to those triggers plays a vital role in managing your asthma. Common asthma triggers include allergens, exercise, respiratory infections, and intense emotions. Read on to learn practical strategies for addressing asthma triggers so that you have fewer flare-ups.  

Respiratory infections

From sinus infections, to seasonal colds, to the flu, infections that affect your respiratory system are a significant trigger for asthma symptoms. Practicing good hand washing hygiene and avoiding people who are sick will reduce your exposure to respiratory infections. 

Despite your best efforts to limit your exposure, you may still deal with a bout of flu or flu from time to time. When you’re under the weather with a respiratory infection, it is wise to use your peak flow meter more often to keep a check on how well your asthma is controlled as the infection runs its course.

Keep track of your symptoms and have your asthma medication ready in case you need it.

Physical activity 

You don’t have to give up an active lifestyle to keep your asthma symptoms in check. While it is true that exercise can trigger asthma symptoms in some people, there are steps you can take to manage this trigger and still engage in the physical activities that you enjoy. 

Everyone should get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise each week, and if you have asthma, exercise can help lung function. In people with asthma, the membranes that line the airway are sensitive. 

When you exercise, breathing faster and harder can irritate these membranes and trigger an asthma attack. The key is to find a balance between exercise and managing your asthma. This means it is essential not to overdo it when it comes to physical activity.

Using an inhaler 10 to 15 minutes before physical activity can help reduce the chance of triggering your asthma symptoms. Board-certified internal medicine physician Prabhdeep Singh, MD, possesses the training and expertise to evaluate and help patients manage their asthma symptoms while remaining active. 

Singh can work closely with you to develop a care plan to manage your asthma symptoms and maintain an active lifestyle.

Allergens 

Many people with asthma also have respiratory allergies. Keeping your allergies under control will help manage your asthma. If you have seasonal allergies, start taking your allergy medicine a few weeks before symptoms typically strike. 

Treating symptoms early, before they strike can better help keep your allergy symptoms under control. It’s vital for people with year-round allergies to allergens, such as dust mites, to follow their prescribed treatment plan.

Strong emotions

Stress and strong emotions are well-known asthma triggers. Managing your day to day stress and keeping your emotions under control can keep asthma symptoms at bay. 

Powerful emotions and stress increase your heart rate and breathing and cause your muscles to tense up. 

This can trigger symptoms if you have asthma. Practicing mindful breathing when you feel stressed or noticed strong emotions coming on can help keep your asthma symptoms in check.

Grounding techniques, such as breathing slowly and focusing your mind on an object around you, can keep your breathing stable, relieve your stress, and reduce the risk of triggering an asthma attack.

If your daily stress levels are high, taking up a stress-relieving activity such as yoga, meditation, and listening to gentle music can help ease stress.

Asthma is manageable. Taking an active role in your health care is the first step. People with asthma who form a strong partnership with their healthcare team are more likely to have their asthma managed effectively. We’re here to help.

To help manage your asthma, contact our El Centro, California office at 760-208-1338 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Singh. You can also book online at your convenience.

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