Seasonal Asthma – What you need to know.

Do you find your asthma is worse during different seasons? Seasonal Asthma is sometimes referred to as allergic Asthma, and seasonal triggers are a contributory factor.

Changes in the weather and seasonal activities can also play a role on making symptoms worse.

If you have Asthma you may find it worsens during different seasons, this may be because seasonal allergens may trigger asthmatic symptoms, when you are allergic to something your body recognises this as an intruder and attack, this produce s immunoglobulin E (IgE). IgE an antibody that releases histamine when allergens activate it. Histamine is the cause of symptoms such as:

  • runny, itchy nose
  • watery, itchy eyes
  • sneezing

In people with asthma, this process may also impact their lungs and airways, causing asthmatic symptoms.

Common Triggers of Asthma

Pollen – produced by trees, grasses and weeds, pollen is a common cause of allergies and seasonal Asthma.

Pollen varies dependant on where you live and the varieties of outdoor greenery.

*Spring – Tree pollen

*Summer – Grass pollen

*Late Summer/ Autumn – Ragweed pollen


Mould and Mildew – Mould and mildew, can also cause seasonal asthmatic symptoms. Mould and mildew are both fungi, which proliferate throughout the year. However, certain molds spread more readily in dry, windy weather. Others are more likely to multiply and spread when it is damp and humid. Mould and Mildew allergies are most common during Summer and Autumn.

Mould can be found both indoors and outside. Your seasonal exposure to mould may be increased by weather conditions and lifestyle choices. For example, if you hike in damp, wooded areas during summer of fall, mould may be lurking in and under weeds and logs.

You may also be driven indoors during cold winter weather, exposing you to mould spores in the home.

Cold weather

Cold, blustery weather outside may impact your activities, leaving you more vulnerable to seasonal asthma.

In the winter, you may remain indoors with the windows closed. This can increase your exposure to indoor allergens, such as:

  • dust mites
  • pet dander
  • mould

Spending time outside may also trigger asthma. Breathing in cold, dry air can dry out and irritate your airways, causing asthmatic symptoms.

Cold air can also increase production of histamine, the culprit behind allergic attacks. Exercising or walking briskly in cold air may worsen these effects.

Hot weather

Summer weather in the UK may be hot and dry, or hot and humid. Both types of heat can bring on seasonal asthma.

Breathing in hot, dry air can cause your airways to narrow, causing asthmatic symptoms.

Humid air is saturated with water. This type of air may also cause your airways to narrow and tighten. If you suffer with asthma you may often find it harder to breathe in humid conditions.

Heat of all kinds can increase pollution, by trapping ozone and particulate matter. Stagnant, hazy air can also trigger asthmatic symptoms, which may increase your symptoms when in the city.

The symptoms of allergic, seasonal asthma include:

  • difficulty breathing (shortness of breath)
  • coughing
  • wheezing upon exhalation
  • chest tightness or pain


If you suffer from seasonal asthma, your doctor can create a treatment plan geared towards prevention and treatment of allergic asthma attacks.

The medications used may include a combination of over-the-counter (OTC) solutions, and prescribed drugs:

  • Inhaled corticosteroids. Inhaled steroids repress inflammation in your airways. When taken daily, they control allergic asthma by reducing symptoms, and often stopping flare-ups before they start.
  • Combination inhaler. Asthma combination inhalers contain corticosteroids, plus long-acting beta agonists that reduce swelling and keep airways open.
  • Rescue (quick relief) medications. There are several types of medications that your doctor might prescribe for you to take, if you have an asthma attack. They include inhaled bronchodilators, and when severe, oral corticosteroids.
  • Leukotriene modifier. Leukotriene modifiers work by blocking the activity of chemicals, called cysteinyl leukotrienes (CysLTs), in your airways. When left unchecked, CysLTs cause constriction and inflammation, making it hard to breathe.
  • Mast cell stabilizers. Mast cell stabilizing drugs are another type of medication that is used to stop allergic reactions.
  • Immunotherapy. Allergy shots may be recommended for moderate to severe allergic asthma. They work by reducing your immune system’s response to allergens over time.

Identifying your seasonal triggers and limiting your exposure to them can help reduce allergic asthma significantly. Some ways to do this include:

  • Pollen counts are at their highest at dawn and through the early. morning. Limit outdoor activity, including exercise, as much as possible during that time of day.
  • Keeping your windows closed during the morning may also stop pollen from entering the home.
  • Reduce levels of pet dander, pollen, dust, and dust mites in your home by vacuuming rugs, curtains, and soft furniture often. Using a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter will help ensure that allergens stay in the bag, rather than getting recirculated out into the room.
  • Steam clean your carpeting as often as possible. This helps kill dust mites.
  • Wash hard surfaces such as wood and tile floors often.
  • Wash bedding, including pillow and mattress protectors, often using hot water.
  • Reduce mould in the home by eliminating leaks in your pipes, roof, and walls.
  • If cold air is a trigger, keep your mouth and nose covered with a scarf when you’re outside. This will help humidify the air.

If you have any concerns about your Asthma please feel free to contact me for a consultation.





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