Did you know that 9 out of 10 people with asthma don’t have their condition under control? I’m lucky in that my own asthma is mild and has little interference on my daily life, to the point that I’m able to exercise at relatively high intensities with minimal effect. However, millions aren’t so lucky and research by Asthma UK shows that someone suffers an asthma attack every 10 seconds!
With the weather – hopefully – warming up, this time of year is difficult for those people for which high pollen levels are a trigger for their asthma (70%). I tend to find that cold weather is more of a challenge for me, but I definitely struggle with hayfever and sneezing/wheezing occasionally!
Here are my top tips for dealing with asthma and hayfever:
1 – Look into taking hayfever medication a few weeks before the hayfever season starts. Check with your pharmacist or doctor which is the best option for your symptoms, and which ones are safe to use alongside your asthma medicines.
2 – Keep a check on the pollen count and try to avoid exercising outdoors on days when it is particularly high, or if you do, steer clear of early morning and late afternoon/evening workouts when pollen levels are at their highest.
3 – If you live in an urban area, take extra care on days when air pollution is also high as this can combine with pollen to make the risk of breathing difficulties even higher.
4 – Try to keep doors and windows closed at home and avoid drying your clothes outside as pollen will stick to them. Equally don’t cut the grass yourself if you can avoid it!
5 – Ask for support or advice if you are struggling.
Lloyds Pharmacy believe that helping people understand how to use their inhalers correctly will significantly reduce the risk of asthma attacks – their latest research has shown that over half who have used their inhaler in the last year did so incorrectly, whilst 10% didn’t know how to use it at all.
Lloyds Pharmacy are inviting people into their local pharmacy for a free check-up and support with using their inhaler, or you can review your asthma online and watch a video guide about correct inhaler use.
Education and support are key with any health issue, but something as simple as teaching people how to correctly administer their medication can make a huge difference and is definitely something I’m happy to promote.
I am also fundraising for Asthma UK this year, as part of my RideLondon-Surrey 100 challenge, so please do donate if you feel that you can support the charity and the fantastic work that they do.
Do you find that pollen affects your exercising in the summer?
NB: This is a sponsored post in partnership with Lloyds Pharmacy.