Adjusting to Weather Changes with Asthma
My husband has always told me he is like a human barometer because he can almost always feel it in his knees when the weather is going to change. This phenomenon is due to changes in barometric pressure that can cause aches in the body, most often in the head and joints.
Weather changes and asthma
In some ways, I feel like my lungs are like barometers and can feel when the weather is going to change. I am also very sensitive to swings in temperature and humidity. It doesn’t take much increase in humidity for my lungs to get angry.
Living in the Midwest for the past two years has definitely been an adjustment getting used to the humidity levels in the summer. What I have learned is to always be prepared. The saying I have heard over and over in the past two years is “if you don't like the weather wait 15 min and it will change” is so true!
Watch for weather changes
Even though the weather can change quickly, keep tabs on the forecast regardless if you are sensitive to weather changes. I have a few apps on my phone that I check daily and sometimes multiple times a day if I am going to be away from home and need to plan accordingly. I have it set up on my phone so I will get alerts when any severe weather is approaching.
I also stay indoors as much as possible when the weather is bad & especially when it’s very hot and humid outside. It doesn’t take long to feel the negative effects which can happen in mere minutes.
Track your peak flow
Peak flow meters are a great tool to help monitor your asthma. If you track your peak flow on a regular basis you may notice that your peak flow number will drop before you even feel asthma symptoms. Refer to your asthma action plan (if you don’t have a peak flow meter or action plan ask your doctor for one at your next visit) and take the necessary steps outlined there to help try and prevent your asthma from flaring further.
Hydration and rest
Staying hydrated is incredibly important regardless of the weather conditions. However when it is very warm during the summertime be sure to have a water bottle with you when you leave your home and don’t forget to drink water while home too! Making time to rest and get as good of a nights sleep as possible will help as well. The heat and humidity is enough to wear anyone down and zap energy so when possible take a good nap!
Who else is like me and has lungs that don’t do well when the weather changes or is especially hot and humid? What are some tips you have learned to help cope?
Have you experienced a collapsed lung?