Allergies to pets with fur or feathers are common, especially among people who have other allergies or asthma. People with dog allergies may be allergic to all dogs or to only some breeds. Cat allergies are about twice as common as dog allergies.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has teamed up with state and local agencies to create EnviroFlash, a free service that provides the air quality forecast to a subscriber’s email or cellphone.
The National Pest Management Association warns families that cockroaches are a leading trigger of allergies and asthma attacks. The pests’ saliva, droppings, and decomposing bodies contain allergen proteins known to trigger allergies and increase the severity of asthma symptoms, especially in children.
Experts don’t think air pollution is one of the main causes of asthma, and that is because many parts of the world that have a lot of pollution don’t necessarily have higher rates of asthma. But air pollution may be one of the factors that cause asthma.
If you have asthma, your airways always have some irritation. When you have an asthma attack, this irritation gets worse and your airways close part way and get blocked with mucus. Asthma attacks may include coughing, chest tightness, wheezing, and trouble breathing.
If you wheeze or have trouble breathing only when you are at work, you may have occupational asthma. Some 200 substances – gases, vapors, and organic and inorganic dusts – found in manufacturing workplaces and among certain occupations have been identified as causes of asthma. It’s estimated that some 11 million workers are exposed to one of these substances.
Molds are part of the natural environment. Outdoors, molds play a part in nature by breaking down dead organic matter, such as fallen leaves and dead trees. But indoors, mold growth should be avoided.
Parents of children with food allergies are aware of the dangers lurking in Halloween treats, but little attention is paid to asthma, which can also be frightening for asthmatic children participating in Halloween festivities.