Traveling with Asthma And Allergies
I am in Hawaii for my Dad’s business trip, so I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to write about traveling with asthma and allergies. When traveling, I would love to have the ability to be spontaneous and adventurous, but I need to research new places and make sure I am prepared. Most people who have asthma and allergies know the triggers in their environment, but they must be prepared when that changes due to travel.
My asthma sometimes seemingly disappears, but it always comes back, often in new environments without warning. Any new place presents potential challenges; for example, plants, animals, climate changes, pollution and just different environments in general. There is no cure for asthma and the triggers are not always understood.
Places to Stay
My family likes to be adventurous, but it generally ends up in an epic failure. For example, the time we traveled to a Country Inn – we were there for 4 minutes before we realized the open windows, the heat, and the five cats were not “asthma friendly” enough for me; 35 miles later we found a Comfort Suites that was a better fit.
This summer we stayed at a beach house where there was mold in the basement. I started wheezing the first day, even though I am not allergic to mold. I have learned that when I travel, I need to be prepared and expect the unexpected, even in places that I have visited before.
Research the Environment
Most asthmatics and people with allergies know their triggers, but that may change in a different environment. There may be extreme temperatures, pollution, and pollen from plants and trees that may affect your asthma. Stress can exacerbate breathing and not knowing your triggers could also be a factor in having an asthma attack.
I visit my grandparents in Sanibel, Florida several times a year. There are algae which blooms and causes red tide. The algae in the air can decrease lung function in a normal person, but with asthmatics it can be particularly dangerous.
In Hawaii, I was the one kid who chose not to wear a lei. Later I found out that apparently non-alcoholic Pina Coladas are not my thing either. I always learn the hard way.
If you have asthma and you are reading this, I hope you have a terrific spring break, but remember to be prepared and do your homework before heading off on holiday!