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Asthma heats up when it gets COLD!
The cold Ohio winter creates special challenges for people with asthma – breathing in very cold air can trigger an attack, but when homes are more closed up in the winter, the indoor air can be unusually full of triggers such as mold and pet dander.
When the staff at The Breathing Association make home visits to people who suffer from asthma, they identify problem areas that can lead to an asthma attack – and a potential trip to the ER.
Here are a few of our tips for avoiding an asthma attack in the winter:
- Cover your nose and mouth with a clean scarf or face-mask when going outside.
- Pet dander collects quickly in the home when pets spend more time inside. Keep pets out of the bedroom and vacuum more often.
- Open up the windows on warmer days to air out your home and let dust and allergens escape, especially right after dusting or vacuuming.
- Avoid the common cold which can lead to an asthma flare-up – Get a flu shot, wash your hands frequently and avoid people who are ill.
For more information about managing asthma click here.
Heat or energy insecurity means that a household is threatened with, or experiences, gas and/or electric utility shut-off. The heating season presents a special challenge for low-income families who are often forced to choose between paying utility bills and paying for food or other expenses. Living without heat in the winter dramatically increases the risk of illness and hospitalization for family members, exacerbates complications of chronic lung conditions such as COPD for the elderly, and threatens the long term health of young children.
Ohio’s Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) assists low-income households with the costs of home heating. The Breathing Association is one of only two HEAP providers in Franklin County, helping thousands of struggling families keep the heat and lights on every winter. What’s more, for households receiving energy assistance from us, family members are also eligible to receive a free medical exam, flu shots and can received specialized care for chronic lung conditions. We are the only Franklin County HEAP provider that provides Home Visits to the home-bound or medically vulnerable.
Heat insecurity threatens the health and safety of the people The Breathing Association exists to serve. By providing heating assistance, we significantly reduce the severity and the incidence of lung health complications in this vulnerable population.
For more information about our HEAP programs, click here.