7 Tips for Coping with Asthma in a City
The HealthCentral Editorial Team Mar 28, 2012 (updated Sep 27, 2013)
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Frequent smoke-free places
Some cities have better smoke-free laws than others, so, it's best to look into your city's laws. If certain bars and restaurants in your area still allow smoking, pick places that are smoke-free. Not only will you be able to breathe better, your clothes and hair won't smell like smoke.
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Check air quality reports
Urban environments tend to have poorer air quality than suburban and rural areas. Watch the air quality reports and stay indoors on days when air quality is especially poor. Though it's no longer recommended for asthmatics to move if their asthma is severe, certain cities are better for people with asthma.
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Take asthma medication as prescribed
If moving to a more asthma-friendly city is not an option, adhering to your asthma treatment plan will help keep asthma in control, even if you can't avoid free radicals completely.
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Improve indoor air quality
Unfortunately, living in urban enviroments also means dealing with more cockroach and rodent allergens. You can control this to some degree by not leaving food or garbage uncovered. For cockroaches, use poison baits, boric acid and traps, rather than chemical agents that can irritate rhinitis and asthma. Other tips include, vacumming once or twice a week, and keeping dust mites to a minimum.
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Stay indoors on hot days
This is when free radicals in ground level ozone may be at their highest levels. Keep windows closed & the air conditioning on. This will also keep pollen out of your home, and keep humidity down, which helps control dust mites. Make sure to change the filters in window units often.
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Find an asthma specialist
Finding an asthma specialist in your city can be tricky if there are a shortage of asthma doctors in your area. However, finding one and adhering to your treatment plan will go a long way in controlling your asthma no matter where you live. Plus, a specialist in your city will know the unique setting and triggers in your area.
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Eat healthy and exercise
Living in a city allows you to have access to great food with lots of options. Be sure to include foods high in antioxidants as it will benefit you in many ways. These foods include blueberries, cherries, citrus fruits and artichokes among others. Exercising regularly will also improve your overall health, and strengthen your lungs.