Asthma and Allergies Often Stick Together
More than 35
million Americans suffer from seasonal allergic rhinitis, or “hay
fever,” while an additional 17 million suffer from asthma,
according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology
(AAAAI). Hay fever — which causes sneezing, runny nose and itchy
eyes — is triggered by allergens, or such airborne irritants as
pollen, mold, pet dander or dust mites.
Americans with asthma, nearly 5 million are children, most of whom also
have allergies. Overall, an estimated 50 million Americans suffer from
some form of allergic disease. Allergic diseases develop at any age and
are hereditary. In fact, if one parent has allergies, the chances of
the child developing allergies are 48 percent. Those odds jump to 70
percent if both parents have allergies.
AAAAI offers the following steps to reduce the level of allergens in your home:
* Use zippered, plastic covers on pillows and mattresses to reduce the presence of dust mites;
* Keep a minimal number of stuffed animals in the bedroom;
* Remove carpet from the child’s bedroom;
* Wash bedding and stuffed animals in hot water (130°F) weekly; and
* Keep indoor relative humidity at less than 50% to inhibit dust mite growth.
* Fix leaky faucets and pipes;
* Avoid vaporizers; and
* Reduce indoor humidity to less than 50%.
* Do not leave food or garbage exposed; and
* Use boric acid traps.
* Remove furry pet from the home to prevent exposure, particularly in the first year of life;
If the pet cannot be removed from the home:
* Keep the pet out of the infant’s bedroom;
* Vaccuum often; and
* Wash the pet weekly to decrease the amount of dander, urine and dried saliva.