Weather Wise Kids: Why does my asthma get worse in the summer?

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10-year-old Will wants to know…  Why does his asthma get worse in the summer?

Well Will, school’s out and summer is here!  It’s time for fun filled days!

But temperatures are going up, and humidity is building.  For many, this combination can become rather uncomfortable.  And for some, it can be dangerous.

Hot, humid air can trigger asthma symptoms.

Asthma is a chronic disease that causes wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness and coughing.  One in 10 kids have it in the United States, and this number is on the rise.  Symptoms can vary from season to season, and no one really knows why.

In the summer, there can be poorer air quality.  Traffic-related pollution and sunlight can lead to bad air days.  Summer thunderstorms can also trigger an asthma attack.  Storms produce gusty winds, and these gusty winds can stir up mold.  Experts say thunderstorms often cause a spike in asthma-related ER visits.

Doctors say there are ways to help ease symptoms.  First, try to keep your cool.  Spend the hottest time of the day inside where there’s air conditioning.  Next, get your allergies under control.  Also, pay attention to the air quality index each day.  Finally, be careful at the neighborhood pool.  Chlorine can trigger attacks.

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