Air Pollutants and Asthma

Air pollution is a trigger for many people with asthma.

Smoking towers

There can be many different kinds of asthma trigger in the air. Not just factory smoke and exhaust fumes but also things like cigarette smoke, strong perfumes or scents, aerosols, cleaning sprays and insect repellents. 

It is also possible that some building materials or home furnishings may give off fumes that might affect your asthma.

Contaminated air is linked to an increase in the frequency and severity of respiratory conditions such as asthma, COPD and lung cancer as well as reduced lung function in young children

ASI - Asthma & Indoor Air Quality Study

What to do if you think air pollution may be a trigger for you:

  • Try to figure out exactly what the trigger is through keeping a diary of symptoms and exposures. This can help you avoid the trigger in future.
  • If you know exhaust fumes are a problem, keep a reliever inhaler in the car.
  • Keep well informed about air quality in your area if you feel air pollution is a trigger for you.
  • For some people, ozone is a problem and levels are likely to be higher on hot, sunny days. If ozone affects your asthma you can avoid being outdoors, especially during the afternoon when the sun is strongest.
  • For home improvement materials, seek specialist advice.
  • Ensure that your home is well ventilated at all times so that fumes can’t accumulate. If you are affected by cleaning sprays etc it is a good idea to keep windows open when they are being used.
  • Get heating systems serviced regularly to avoid malfunction that may lead to the release of fumes.