How to Avoid Common Household Asthma Triggers
Posted by Jo Penaranda on
Parents who have children with asthma know that there a lot of things that can trigger asthma like secondhand smoke, plants, and pollen.
It is very important that you keep your home a safe place for your children. Given that your children will be spending a lot of time at home, it is crucial that you are able to keep your home free from asthma and allergy triggers.
Here are some of the tips we would like to share to keep our children safe as much as possible from asthma triggers.
Keep your house Fume-free!
Smoke and fumes are triggers of asthma. You may not know it but cooking from kerosene stoves, wood or gas creates fumes that can be dangerous to your child. The smoke that comes from cars and buses that enters your house is also one to look out for.
Be careful in using appliances that burn fuel - such as stoves, fireplaces, gas or kerosene space heaters, and oil and gas furnaces. One of the waste product of using such devices is a smell less, colourless gas called nitrogen dioxide which can trigger asthma.
If you can’t help to use these kinds of equipment it is a must to keep the place well ventilated. In doing so you are sure that fumes and smoke don’t linger for so long inside the house and fresh air can come in! One of the best solutions is to open the windows to let fresh air in.
Be very careful in using household Chemicals
For a child with asthma, many common household products such as cleaning supplies, paints, pesticides, perfumes, and soaps can cause an attack. The strong smell can release chemicals into the air that causes the attack.
The best way to avoid attacks is to keep products away from your child to prevent your child from breathing in the chemical fumes. Putting products in a plastic box where smell can’t get through is the best practice.
Choosing products carefully is also one way of preventing such attacks. For soap, shampoos and detergents, you can opt to buy unscented or fragrance-free products. But it is not 100% guarantee as some may still have some scent in them.
Harsh cleaners are also one thing to look out for. Make sure the house is well ventilated when using it and your child is not around when you are cleaning. Following the instructions carefully on how to use the products will also help.
Lastly, refrain from using perfumes, air fresheners and scented candles. These products are full of chemicals and they tend to linger longer in the room.
Pets, Bugs, and Mould
Kids with asthma tend to have allergic reactions to pets, bugs and mould.
To keep your children from having allergies from pets. It is best practice always keep your pet off furniture and beds and carpets. The hair of your pets gets caught in the furniture and that can be a cause of an attack. Pet Dander or the skin that is shed by your pets also gets caught in the fabric and when someone jumps in the bed or lays down, the pet dander is thrown flying in the air and inhaled by your children.
As much as possible make sure sheets and other beddings are always clean. You can even try to wash them in hot water once a week to kill off dust mites and other bugs. Also, be careful in using insecticides because of the chemicals and the strong smell.
Make sure to clean the bathroom, kitchen and other damp places inside the house to avoid having moulds. It is very important that you can clean and scrub off moulds right away as this can also lead to other illnesses.
Smoke in the house!
Smoke from cigarettes and car are also asthma triggers. For some children, even lingering smell of tobacco in the furniture, curtains or clothes can lead to asthma attacks.
As much as possible don’t allow smoking inside the house. Keep the house well ventilated at all times and keep the windows open so that smoke won’t linger inside for very long. Never cover tobacco smoke with air sprays and scented candles as it would just add to the problem.
Air Pollution from the outside is also a problem you have to deal with. Don’t let your car run for a long time in the garage as some smoke might get inside the house. If you live in an urban place where streets are busy with cars and people, keep your windows closed and set up a good ventilation system inside the house with an exhaust fan.
That’s it. These are some of the steps you can take to prevent your child from having an asthma attack. This guide is also helpful for families without an asthma sufferer.
Stay safe everyone!