Asthma - Prevention

A number of steps can be taken to minimize or eliminate exposure to allergens and other factors that bring on an asthma attack. These steps include:

  • As much as possible, avoid contact between an asthma patient and family pets to which he or she is allergic. Keep the pet out of the bedroom and away from carpets and upholstered furniture. Remove all feathers from the house.
  • Avoid exposure to dust mites by removing wall-to-wall carpeting, reducing the humidity, and using special pillows and mattress covers. Remove stuffed toys or wash them each week in hot water.
  • Cockroach allergens can be eliminated by killing the insects with poison, traps, or boric acid. Do not use synthetic chemicals. Prevent cockroaches from returning by making sure that food and garbage are not left out.
  • Keep indoor air clean by vacuuming carpets once or twice a week while the patient is not present. Do use air conditioners during warm weather, but do not use humidifiers.
  • Avoid exposure to tobacco smoke.
  • Avoid outdoor exercise when air pollution levels are high.
  • Exposure to workplace allergens can be avoided by following simple precautions. Always wear a mask and, if possible, arrange to work in a safer area.

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