Heading off on a summer break? Don’t forget your asthma and allergies will be coming with you, warns the National Asthma Council Australia.
Asthma Council CEO Siobhan Brophy is urging everyone with asthma and allergies, especially families with children, to prepare in advance for the holiday season.
‘It is predicted there could be record-breaking temperatures across Australia this summer, and with extreme weather changes, pollen and even bushfire smoke, summer holidays can pose a high risk for asthma and allergy flare-ups.
‘Australians love travelling over the holiday period, but whether it’s locally or overseas, leaving home can bring its own unique challenges for people with asthma and allergies.
‘The good news is that by taking simple precautions, like following your management plan and avoiding your known triggers, you and your family can make the most of the summer holidays while staying safe with asthma and allergies,’ says Ms Brophy.
Making life that little bit simpler over the busy holiday period, the Council’s Sensitive Choice program has developed a series of factsheets to help you stay safe in any situation this summer.
From managing your asthma in hot weather and during bushfire season, to minimising allergies when putting up your Christmas trees, or what you need to know when travelling with asthma and allergies, get all the tips you need to stay safe, healthy and happy:
- Visit your GP to get or update your written asthma action plan and follow it. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist before going on holidays about taking medications to prevent or reduce your symptoms.
- Always have a reliever inhaler with you and bring sufficient quantities of up-to-date asthma and hay fever medication to last the whole holiday.
- Checking online PollenForecast alerts for high-risk pollen days, and Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) for dust storms, thunderstorms and bushfire smoke to make sure you are prepared.
- Take special care on windy, hot and thunderstorm days and stay indoors with the windows closed.
- Give holiday homes and Christmas decorations a deep clean. Stored bed linen and blankets can become musty or dusty – air them well.
If you’re travelling away from home, it’s important to think prevention and be emergency ready, especially if you are visiting international, rural or remote locations.
This means keeping your reliever inhaler handy so you can get to it quickly, knowing where you can access a doctor or pharmacist and checking that your medical insurance specifically covers your family member’s asthma.
If you experience symptoms and they don’t go away or get worse despite you taking action, then follow the First Aid for Asthma steps and seek professional help if you need to.