As people get older, their risk for asthma increases. The body’s natural defenses against allergens, such as pollen, decrease as people age. Additionally, older people’s ability to breathe easily and rid themselves of excess mucus diminishes. This makes living with asthma challenging in old age, but it becomes complicated when you have to manage it independently. Here are some tips to help you manage asthma when you’re older:
Continue To Have Regular Asthma Reviews
Keeping an asthma review schedule can help you identify any changes and ensure that you take the right medications and maintain good health habits.
Here are some tips for keeping an asthma review schedule:
- Make a list of your symptoms, including when they occur and what triggers them.
- Review your medication regimen regularly, adjusting as needed based on your symptoms and diagnosis.
- Follow a healthy lifestyle that includes regular exercise, adequate rest, and avoidance of smoking, pollution, and other triggers of asthma symptoms.
- Discuss your asthma care with your health care team regularly to keep up to date on the latest advances in treatment and management.
Track Your Symptoms
Tracking your symptoms can be a challenge when you are older, but with a bit of effort, it is possible. Keep the following tips in mind as you begin tracking your asthma symptoms:
- Keep a record of when and where your symptoms appear. This information will help you identify patterns in your asthma episodes and make better decisions about managing them.
- Make sure to take detailed notes about what you eat and drink throughout the day. Asthma can be worsened by exposure to certain foods or drinks. Keeping track of these exposures can help identify potential allergens or triggers for your asthma episodes.
- Be aware of changes in weather conditions that might impact your asthma symptoms.
Doing this will help you manage your condition and keep it under control.
Measure Your Peak Flow
Peak flow measures how much air you can exhale in one minute. It’s essential to know your peak flow because managing asthma when you are older requires considering your ability to breathe. If your peak flow is lower than expected, it may be time for a check-up or treatment. Try these tips to increase your peak flow:
- Take regular lung function tests. These tests help determine any changes in your airflow that need to be addressed.
- Avoid smoking, exposure to air pollutants, and exercise in dusty conditions. These factors can decrease your ability to breathe easily.
- Eat a healthy diet that includes fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. This will help improve overall respiratory health and reduce the risk of asthma attacks.
Act Quickly If Symptoms Get Worse
When asthma symptoms start to get worse, it’s important to see a doctor as soon as possible. The doctor can prescribe medications to control the symptoms or recommend other treatments such as exercise or using an inhaler with a higher dose of medication.
Here are some things to keep in mind if your asthma gets worse:
- Keep a close eye on how your asthma is doing. If symptoms are worsening or if your asthma isn’t responding well to treatment, contact your doctor.
- Be proactive about managing your asthma. Make sure to take all of the prescribed medications as prescribed, and do not stop taking them without talking to your doctor first.
- Exercise regularly and manage stress levels carefully if you have asthma. Exercising regularly can help improve airflow and reduce inflammation in the lungs while managing stress levels can help prevent attacks from happening in the first place.