Emotions Affecting Asthma? Time For A Social Media Detox!

What a crazy roller coaster ride we have been on this year. I feel like every day is a new adventure! A former news junkie, I've been afraid to turn on the news after work. What weird or crazy thing am I going to see tonight?

My emotions have been all over the place. And I've noticed my asthma is getting worse. Like many of you with asthma, I wonder, "What's triggering my asthma this time?" My whole family suffers from a variety of environmental allergies, so there's a long list of suspects.

What's triggering my asthma?

But this time of year, the first thing we do is check the pollen count. Pollen counts are low for grass, mold, chenopods, ragweed, sage, etc.

Hmm, what about air quality levels? Looks like the ozone level isn't too bad this summer. And the forest fires are far enough away that we don't have an elevated PM 2.5 level.

So, what else can be triggering my asthma? Well, the most likely culprit is stress!

What does stress have to do with asthma?

Well, everything! Not only can stress trigger an asthma attack, but it can always cause asthma.1,2 Yep, read it and weep.

My 3 adult children and I already have asthma, so stress didn't cause asthma for us (our asthma is genetic). But stress does trigger asthma attacks for us.

It's been a stressful year

Like most families, we've had our share of stress this year. The Hubby and I both had to start working from home (without access to our normal computer equipment, network drives, and office supplies). Yes, I know we are lucky that we CAN work from home.

Our youngest college-aged kids had to switch to online university courses and both lost their service industry jobs during the pandemic.

We have also had the usual flat tires, car repairs, broken sprinklers, etc.

But the thing that has been stressing me out more than anything else is social media. I have been surprised to see all the inaccurate information and fighting. And I've been shocked to see comments from people that I thought I knew well. Anyone else had to unfollow family or friends on social media?

Let's see a raise of hands!

Reducing my stress

I've been trying to reduce my stress level so my lungs aren't so cranky. Like most moms, I am awful when it comes to self-care. I feel like my stress level is stuck in high gear and I'm always worried about something. So I've been trying a few things to lower my stress level.

Yoga

Yoga has been very helpful. I'm actually terrible at yoga because my balance is so bad. I joke that I can't walk and chew gum at the same time, but it's true! Yoga does help me feel centered and calm (until I drive back home and encounter traffic)!

Meditation

I also practice guided meditation. This is also hard for me because my mind is usually a jumble of thoughts and worries. But I actually feel my heart beat slower and I feel relaxed.

Lighthearted connections

It helps lower my stress level to chat with friends, watch funny cat videos, and find funny movies to watch. I feel happy and centered.

Until I scroll through social media.

I try so hard to relax and stay calm, and then social media just destroys all of that. So, I have taken a break from social media (apparently it's called a "social media detox"). I have felt calmer, happier, and my lungs have been less cranky too.

Hmm, I might be on to something here! Anyone else try a social media detox? Has it helped?

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