Triple digit temps tough on asthma patients

Summer heat is particularly difficult for those suffering from asthma.
Summer heat is particularly difficult for those suffering from asthma.

DECATUR, AL (WAFF) - What looks like a beautiful summer day can actually be harmful when the temperatures rise to triple digits.

April VanDonkelaar said she's been dealing with asthma symptoms most of her life, but the hot weather can take its toll quickly.

"When the heat and the humidity are high like this, it definitely affects my asthma. I have a difficult time breathing and it just sucks all your energy," she said.

When it comes to these triple digit temperatures, the most important thing for an asthmatic is to know what can trigger an asthma attack.

April said if you know what your triggers are, you can avoid them and stay healthy.

"For me, hot or very cold weather, cats, dust, grass clippings," said VanDonkelaar.

Dr. Mahipal Ravipati is an Asthma specialist, practicing in Decatur.

"When the temperature is very high and humid two things happen. One is there is too much pollen that's in the air. And number two, when the humidity is high the mold spores are heavy in the air," said Ravipati.

He said allergies can then spark an asthma attack.

"With me it starts out with an itching and a kind of hivey thing and then I feel like I'm being strangled, like I can't catch my breath and I've run a mile," added VanDomkellar.

Keep your rescue inhaler on your person at all times, especially if you go outside.

Ravipati said you can live your life as normal, but take precautions.

"You can play ball and all the good stuff, but make sure the weather is cooperating. Maybe do it very late in the evening so it's not so hot and all the pollen has settled to the ground," said Ravipati.

And again, avoid anything you know will spark an asthma attack.

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