Enjoy a Happy and Healthy Summer Vacation

Summer has officially started and so have the thoughts of summer vacation. It conjures up visions of relaxation, sports, sunny days spent on a sandy beach or a mountain trail.

Summer Vacation!
Summer Vacation!

For individuals and families with allergies and asthma though, it means extra thought and preparation before letting the “good times roll”

As we head full tilt into summer here are some common sense but commonly missed suggestions for healthy vacation.

Medications – Make a detailed list of any medications showing prescription refill numbers, prescribing doctor, phone number and dosage. Make sure you pack your medications in a carry-on bag just in case the airline happens to misplace your checked bags. One would think that could not happen with what they charge for checking a bag these days but it does.

Also make sure to pack an extra Epipen in case someone has an allergic reaction to an insect sting or something they ate. Another good thing to pack is a topical hydrocortisone cream.

Essential Gear – If someone has asthma and is using a peak flow meter be sure to bring it and their chart to record results. I don’t need to tell you not forget the nebulizer but if you are travelling overseas don’t forget the electrical converter.

We have heard from many customers over the years they could not use their nebulizer because of power problems. For people who are camping you can either use a power converter that hooks into your car or buy a portable one that runs on batteries.

To protect yourself from dust mites it may be wise to pack your own allergy proof pillow and mattress covers. Many of our customers use the king size fitted mattress covers and king size pillow encasing the when I travel.  They are easy to use and the king size covers fit any bed.

Insurance – Don’t forget to check your insurance policy to make sure you’re covered in the area that you’re traveling. Way too many people get a big surprise if they run into a problem and need to go to a clinic or emergency room.

Sensible Behavior – During the hot summer months people with allergies and asthma should drink plenty of fluids especially water.  Try to avoid exposure to cigarette smoke whenever possible. Make sure you request a hotel room that is non-smoking and mold free.

If you have food allergies call ahead order special meal on the airplane or better yet pack your own snacks. When eating out make sure you let your server know you have allergies.

Just because you have allergies does not mean you cannot have a great summer vacation. You just need to do a bit more planning.

Have a great Summer!

Mike

Can Cold Air Cause an Asthma Attack?

Now that cold weather has set in for the winter many people’s  allergies and asthma have kicked into high gear. But can cold air cause asthma?

Yes, cold air can cause asthma. The cold air can cause constriction in the lungs. It’s not just the cold air that is the problem either. When the heating system is first turned on the dust and mold that built up over the summer months spews forth.  So, not only is the cold air an allergy and asthma trigger, but the heating people use to warm the cold air is a problem as well.

can cold cause asthma?
© David Coleman | Dreamstime Stock Photos

This has always been a problem in south Florida .  But, an article from IQair shows that it is also a problem in the northeastern United States as well.

“The first uses of indoor heating systems during the autumn and winter months can trigger asthma symptoms. In a study of asthma hospital admissions in New York City and other urban areas, the American Thoracic Society found that emergency clinic admissions for asthma increase with the first seasonal uses of indoor heating.” Read complete article from IQair  It’s too late now, but next year turn on your system and let it air out before you have to close up the house for the winter.

Wishing you the best of health
Mike Krause
Allergy Store – Helping customers since 1989

Can Duct Cleaning Help Your Allergies

We have received several calls over the last few days from people wanting to know if we thought having their ducts cleaned would help their allergies.

dirty-ductWe know for a fact that heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems are a collection point for all sorts of contaminates that can make your allergies worse and trigger asthma attacks. The duct work in a home or office can have mold, dust, pet dander, pollen, bacteria and even dead bugs.

Now many people assume that just because they change their filter regulary that their HVAC system is clean and allergen free. Not really. Think about all the stuff you find under the fridge when you moved it after 1 year. Now multiply that by 20. In 25 years we have seen some really nasty duct work.

Hiring a quality duct cleaning company will not only remove these contaminates improving the air quality, it has been proven that it may allow you system to run more efficiently.  A dirty coil can add $30-$40 to your electric bill.

We believe duct cleaning when done correctly can help reduce allergy symptoms. The key is to hire a company that does it correctly. The guy who says he can clean you entire HVAC system for $69 is not going to really clean your duct work. He is just cleaning out your wallet.

To find a quality company in your area visit the National Air Duct Cleaning Association (NADCA)  website www.nadca.com. They can provide you with the certified member companies in your area.

Wishing you the best of health