Cold Air And Asthma

January 7, 2010

I was walking through midtown Manhattan this afternoon in the frigid cold, and I thought today would be a good day to say something about cold air and asthma.   Cold air is a common exacerbating factor for asthma and the impact of the cold air can be worsened by exercise.   If you are on inhaled steroids as a chronic controller medication for your asthma, and you are the type of asthmatic who is affected by cold air, it is sometimes helpful to up your inhaled steroid dose if you know you are going to have exposure to cold air for an extended period of time.  Optimizing your anti-inflammatory medication can take the edge off the cold, so to speak.  Another option is to wear a scarf or bandana around the mouth and nose when outside, thereby humidifying and warming the air before it hits the lungs.  This can prevent the bronchospasm associated with cold air exposure.  Always remember to have your bronchodilator medication with you, in case you need it.

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