For many, the rise in temperature and humidity of summer in Fort Myers also brings out allergy and asthma symptoms; but why? The answer is a little more complicated than you think.
Researchers have found that heated air could be a trigger for asthma because heat stress affects the physiology of your airways. Usually this temperature is higher than what most people encounter outside of heat waves, so other factors contribute as well.
The humidity of a Fort Myers summer alone could trigger asthma. Humid air is thought to be heavier and harder to breathe, but it also harbors pathogens like dust mites and mold that thrive in dark, moist environments. Other factors such as pollen from plants that thrive during the summer can also trigger allergy and asthma.
Summer also brings a seasonal increase in smog and other pollutants in the air due to a lack of winds and increased travel. The two key air pollutants to be aware of are ozone found in smog and particle pollution found in smoke. Ozone is at its worst on hot summer afternoons and evenings while particle pollution can be found year round.
Minimizing exposure to these triggers is the best way to avoid asthma episodes. Dr. Imtiaz Ahmad, with Allergy Sleep & Lung Care in Fort Myers explains how:
- Stay inside or minimize time outside on very hot days where the temperature rises above 86 degrees.
- Get tested for allergens like pollen and take the proper medications.
- Even though it may get hot, keep windows and doors closed to minimize exposure to foreign irritants.
- Watch the air quality index.
- Take care of any errands in the morning when the air is cooler and has fewer irritants.
- Keep indoor humidity at 50% or lower to cut down on dust mites and mold.
For more information about how to manage your asthma symptoms, call Allergy Sleep & Lung Care at (239) 437-6670.