By Adem Lewis / in , , , , /


SEVEN-DAY FORECAST, ANOTHER
WARMING TREND WITH HUMIDITY. ADAM: WE’RE ALMOST HALFWAY
THROUGH SUMMER, AND ONE ISSU
PEOPLE STRUGGLE WITH THIS TIME
OF THE YEAR IS ASTHMA. WITH ALL THE POLLEN, AIR
POLLUTION, AND HUMIDITY, THIS
TIME OF THE YEAR CAN BE BRUTAL
FOR PEOPLE WITH ASTHMA. IN TODAY’S “HEALTH HEADLINES,”
WE HAVE STATE EPIDEMIOLOGIST DR. BENJAMIN CHAN JOINING US. TELL US HOW SERIOUS A PROBLEM IS
IN NEW HAMPSHIRE. DR. CHAN: ASTHMA IS A CHRONIC
DISEASE OF THE LUNGS THAT LEADS
TO PEOPLE HAVING TROUBLE
BREATHING. PEOPLE HAVE REPEATED EPISODES OF
WHEEZING AND COUGHING AND
BREATHLESSNESS IN THE CHEST
TIGHTENS. THE AIRWAYS IN THE LUNGS CAN
CONSTRICT AND NARROW IN RESPONSE
TO WHAT WE CALL TRIGGER, AN
IRRITANT OR AN ALLERGEN THAT CAN
LEAD TO ASTHMA ATTACKS. TREATMENTS ARE DIFFERENT. OFTENTIMES ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS
COME INTO PLAY. YOU MENTIONED THE WEATHER,
HUMIDITY, AIR POLLUTION, SMOKE,
ALLERGENS LIKE POLLEN AND DUST
AND PET DANDER. OCCUPATIONAL EXPOSURES CAN
CONTRIBUTE TO ASTHMA ATTACKS. PEOPLE NEED TO KNOW THE TRIGGERS
SO THEY CAN PREVENT ASTHMA. THERE ARE MEDICATIONS TO HELP
PEOPLE CONTROL LONG-TERM
BREATHING SYMPTOMS AS WELL. ADAM: A PROBLEM IN THE STATE? DR. CHAN: ASTHMA CAN AFFECT
ADULTS AND CHILDREN. IT IS MORE COMMONLY DIAGNOSED IN
CHILDHOOD, BUT IT CAN OCCUR AT
ANY AGE. 13% OF ADULTS AND 7% OF CHILDREN
IN NEW HAMPSHIRE LIVE WITH
ASTHMA. FOR ADULTS, NEW HAMPSHIRE AND
NEW ENGLAND IN GENERAL HAVE SOME
OF THE HIGHEST RATES OF ASTHMA
IN THE COUNTRY. IT IS NOT JUST AN ISSUE OF WHO
HAS ASTHMA, IT IS HOW IT IS
CONTROL. ADULTS AND CHILDREN IN AFTER,
LESS THAN HALF OF ADULTS AND
CHILDR REPORT GOOD CONTROL OF
ASTHMA. THIS LEADS TO INCREASED WORK AT
BREATHING AND EMERGENCY CARE
VISITS. ADAM WHAT ARE SOME OF THE
THINGS THAT PEOPLE WITH ASTHMA
CAN DO TO PREVENT THE RISK OF
HAVING AN ATTACK? DR. CHAN: PEOPLE NEED TO KNOW
THE SYMPTOMS AND WORK WITH
HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS TO BRING
IT UNDER CONTROL WITH
MEDICATIONS. FO CHILDREN, IT IS IMPORTANT TO
WORK WITH HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS
TO DEVELOP A MANAGEMENT PLAN. THIS IS IMPORTANT FOR CHILDREN
WHO ARE IN SCHOOLS OR DAY CARE
OR SUMMER CANCELED THAT IF THEY
INCREASED DIFFICULTY BREATHING,
THEY CAN GO TO THE NURSE ON SITE
AND GET RESCUE MEDICATIONS TO BRING THE BREATHING UNDER
CONTROL. IN THE HOME ENVIRONMENTS, IT IS
IMPORTANT TO LOOK AT POTENTIAL
ALLERGENS AND IRRITANTS, MAKING
SURE THAT THE HOMES ARE VACUUMED
AND DUSTED REGULARLY, LINENS AND
BEDSHEETS ARE WASHED, POTENTIALLY EVEN USING MATTRESS
AND PILLOW COVERS TO PREVENT
EXPOSURE TO DU MITES,
PREVENTING PETS FROM SLEEPING IN
THE BEDROOM. TOBACCO SMOKE IS A BIG
CONTRIBUTOR TO ASTHMA SO THAT
ADULTS ME TO MAKE SURE THEY ARE
NOT SMOKING IN THEIR HOMES WITH
HER THAT HOMES AND CARS WITH
CH


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