Cold and flu season is almost upon us once again, and if you have asthma, this annoyance that comes with the changing seasons can be more serious.
Having asthma doesn’t mean that you are more likely to get a cold or the flu, but it does mean you have a harder time getting through them. Generally, your symptoms will be worse because your immune system reacts more strongly to the virus than the average person. This strong response from your immune system can trigger asthma attacks when you have a cold or the flu.
The first step to managing your asthma during cold season is prevention. Get the flu vaccine before cold and flu season is in full swing, but remember it is recommended that those with asthma avoid the nasal-spray form of the vaccination because it may trigger an attack. Other than getting the vaccine, follow normal hygiene practices to avoid the virus, such as washing your hands frequently, clean surfaces that may carry the virus often, avoid crowds and try to stay away from those who have a cold.
If you do get a cold or the flu regardless of the preventative steps you take, you should have an asthma action plan in place, preferably one that has been updated with your doctor to specifically discuss cold and flu season. You should also:
- Use your peak flow meter to monitor you asthma
- Keep track of symptoms and adjust medication accordingly
- Go to the doctor if your asthma medications aren’t helping or your asthma symptoms are getting worse
- Get some rest and fluids
If you have more questions about your asthma during cold and flu season, don’t hesitate to give us a call at 1-800-220-1990.