If you are an asthma sufferer, but find that you are getting cold-like symptoms throughout the year, it may be that you are also suffering from allergic rhinitis.
Seasonal Allergic Rhinitis
Seasonal allergic rhinitis, or hay fever, affects sufferers throughout the spring and/or summer months, mostly between March and August when the pollen levels are at their highest. Allergic rhinitis can affect both your quality of life and your day-to-day activities. Research has shown that allergic rhinitis and asthma are closely linked and for some people, if their allergy is not well managed it can make their asthma symptoms worse. Up to 80% of asthma sufferers also suffer with allergic rhinitis. It makes sense, therefore, to have an integrated approach to treat both conditions. Treatment should also include allergen avoidance wherever possible. You can find out more information from Allergy UK's website (www.allergyuk.org).
To keep up to date with the weather and pollen forecasts, visit: www.metoffice.gov.uk and download the app for either iPhone or Android phones.
If you suffer with year-round symptoms, or perennial rhinitis, you may be reacting to house-dust mite .Not all perennial rhinitis is allergy induced.
Common triggers of asthma
- Animal proteins, such as house dust mites, animal hair and cat saliva
- Household cleaners, sprays, paint, strong perfume
- Mould spores, which are released from trees at the end of the year, or in damp housing
- Pollens, including trees and grass
- Traffic fumes
- Weather and changes in temperature
Medications such as aspirin or beta-blockers and medicines containing salicylates, such as ibuprofen and some other anti-inflammatory drugs.
- Cigarette smoke
- Viral infections (cold, Flu or other respiratory infections
- Hormonal changes
- Gastro -oesophageal reflux (GORD)
Further information on allergens and seasonal triggers can be found on the Allergy UK website (www.allergyuk.org) and the Asthma UK website (www.asthma.org.uk). You can also contact your doctor or asthma nurse for further advice and information.
Daily Air Quality Index
The Daily Air Quality Index (DAQI) tells you about levels of air pollution and provides recommended actions and health advice. The index is numbered 1-10 and divided into four bands: low (1) to very high (10), to provide detail about air pollution levels in a simple way, similar to the sun index or pollen index.
You should follow the three steps below to use the Daily Air Quality Index:
Step 1: Determine whether you (or your children) are likely to be at-risk from air pollution.
Information on people who may be affected is provided in the 'additional information' section on the 'short-term effects of air pollution' page. Your doctor may also be able to give you advice.
Step 2: If you may be at-risk, and are planning strenuous activity outdoors, check the air pollution forecast.
Step 3: Use the health messages below corresponding to the highest forecast level of pollution as a guide. Click on the link: https://uk-air.defra.gov.uk/