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24th Jul 2019

Warning issued for asthma and hayfever sufferers due to heatwave

Jade Hayden

Stay safe, lads.

A warning has been issued for asthma and hayfever sufferers due to the heatwave.

The Asthma Society of Ireland has given advice to those who experience either condition, the symptoms of which can be heightened by intense heat.

Europe is expected to see record breaking temperatures over the next few days, with some parts of the UK experiencing highs of up to 38 degrees.

CEO of Asthma Society of Ireland Sarah O’Connor said that people with hayfever should be particularly wary when travelling abroad.

“Hayfever symptoms are capable of escalating an asthma attack, which in some cases can be fatal,” she said.

“Asthma deaths are rising in Ireland, with one person now dying every six days as a result of their asthma.

“In addition, people with hayfever experience symptoms which really compromise their quality of life and ability to enjoy the summer months.”

Approximately 312,000 people in Ireland suffer from either asthma or hayfever.

Up to 80 percent of people with asthma also have hayfever too, so it’s important to ensure that staying safe while travelling is paramount.

The Asthma Society of Ireland has released the following tips for staying healthy while abroad:

  • Speak to the Asthma Society’s free Asthma and COPD Adviceline on 1800 44 54 64 prior to your holiday
  • Visit your GP to update your Asthma Action Plan
  •  Talk to a doctor or pharmacist about taking medication to prevent or reduce symptoms.
  • Take sufficient quantities of asthma and hayfever medication to last the duration of your holiday
  • Take your asthma medication with you as hand luggage
  • Ensure that you have an Asthma Attack Card and both you and your travel companions know what to do in case of an asthma emergency
  • Ensure you have travel insurance and check that your policy will cover asthma.
  • Before you arrive, locate the nearest pharmacy, doctor, hospital and ambulance service nearest to your accommodation

The pollen count is also incredibly high in Ireland at the moment too. In order to adequately protect yourself, the following advice should be adhered to:

  • Keep windows and doors closed especially at night
  • Stay indoors as much as possible
  • Stay away from grassy areas, especially when grass is freshly cut
  • Put Vaseline around your nostrils to trap pollen
  • Wear wraparound sunglasses to stop pollen getting into your eyes
  • Shower, wash your hair and change your clothes if you have been outside for an extended period
  • Avoid drying clothes outdoors, or shake them outdoors before bringing them in
  • Minimise your contact with animals that have been outside

You can check out the Asthma Society’s pollen tracker here.