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pollen and wildfires - are masks enough when you go out?

I haven't been going out, trying to avoid a severe episode. For anyone going out with a mask on, is it enough?

  1. I know some people have shared masks are useful, but ultimately I think it would depend upon 1) the kind of mask you get and 2) how sensitive you are, personally, to different triggers. Everyone is different. You may want to see what your doctor recommends or go for a "test trip," keeping your inhalers or other medications on you at all times. I hope you do okay! -Melissa, asthma.net team

    1. When in an environment with my worst trigger, perfume, I use a 3M respirator that has an activated charcoal stage. With this I can usually weather places like church or malls and department stores. The respirator is bulky and uncomfortable but effective. I purchased it at Lowes.

      1. Thanks for sharing what has worked for you in the public realm. Glad to see it has been effective in keeping triggers to a minimum and asthma controlled. Warmly ~ Rebecca (community moderator)

    2. Wildfires are terrible where I am - it’s embarrassing to wear in public but I find a plastic respirator (3M Half Facepiece Reusable Respirator All-in-One Kit) 100% effective. I was using it in my home when the air purifiers weren’t working well.

      N-95 masks are somewhat effective but not nearly as good as plastic/silicone respirator. They are also cheaper long term - often the price of a single box of disposable N-95 masks.

      1. Hi Elizabeth, and thanks for sharing the success you're having using this product (the #M Facepiece Respirator), with the community. It's always good for the community when we share our experiences here. I hope others will read what you have shared and get some ideas that might work for them as well.
        Have a great weekend!
        Leon (site moderator asthma.net)

      2. I'm sorry to hear about the challenges you're facing with wildfires affecting air quality in your area. It's essential to prioritize your health and safety during such times. Respirators like the one you mentioned are designed to provide a secure and more effective seal around the face, offering better protection against particles and airborne pollutants compared to disposable N-95 masks. They are also designed to be reusable, making them more cost-effective in the long term, as you mentioned. During wildfires or periods of poor air quality, especially this year, wearing a respirator can help reduce exposure to harmful particles and alleviate the impact on your respiratory system. While it may feel embarrassing to wear it in public, your health and well-being should take precedence. Kudos for taking the step toward safe and manageable health and wearing protection to manage your chronic condition. We wish you well as the air quality continues to be a menace. Warmly ~ Rebecca (Community moderator)

    3. Iam Ruth Stanton
      Iive with asthma acting up most of my time when the wildfire somke as in the Air my chast hurt then have go up hospital

      1. Hi again, Ruth (), and thanks for your post. I see you posted something pretty similar, elsewhere on our asthma.net platform, for which I was able to provide a reply. For your convenience, here is a link to that conversation: https://asthma.net/living/wildfires-and-air-quality#comment-507126. I do hope you have an opportunity to look it over.
        I welcomed you there, too, as new member!
        Wishing you well,
        Leon (site moderator asthma.net)

      2. Hoping you are able to overcome the wildfire smoke that is so prevalent in your area of the world. Being proactive can make all the difference. Some ways are to keep track of air quality reports and wildfire updates in your area; on days when air quality is poor, try to stay indoors as much as possible and avoid outdoor activities; as well as work with your healthcare provider to develop an asthma action plan that outlines steps to take when your symptoms worsen. Are you managing somewhat better after having to head to the hospital? Hoping you've found a strategy to help relieve symptoms when environmental factors are poor. Warmly - Rebecca (community moderator)

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