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Dr. Anusha C M

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Lungs Specialist Bangalore
Reviewed by

Dr. Anusha C M

Consultant - Respiratory Medicine

Manipal Hospitals, Malleshwaram

How to Manage Asthma In Changing Weather: Its Triggers and Management

Reviewed by:

Dr. Anusha C M

Posted On: May 23, 2024

blogs read 6 Min Read

What Causes Asthma Disease: Diagnosis & Therapy

Asthma is the most common non-communicable illness among children and young adults. It is the main cause of half a million deaths every year, with 46% of global asthma deaths occurring in India (Global Burden of Disease 2021). This increase in asthma cases in India is mainly linked to predominant factors such as shifts in weather and worsening pollution. Read this blog to know the most common triggers and asthma disease treatment.


Common Triggers of Asthma

In patients with asthma, the airways become irritated and inflamed and this increases their sensitivity to other allergens. Some of the common triggers of asthma include:

  • Air pollutants, including factory emissions, car exhaust, etc.

  • Bugs (cockroaches, mice, and other pests) found in the home 

  • Pollens and Allergens like dust mites and mould over the walls 

  • Tobacco smoke

  • Cold air

  • Strong chemicals or smells

  • Existing respiratory illnesses

Signs and Symptoms of Asthma

Understanding asthma symptoms can help you understand what your triggers are. Moreover, it can also determine whether you need quick-relief medicines or have a medical emergency. 

Some common asthma symptoms include:

Consult our pulmonologist in Malleshwaram if you are experiencing asthma symptoms.

How to Combat Asthma in Changing Weather Conditions?

The first line of asthma treatment involves identifying and avoiding the triggers that can exacerbate your asthma symptoms. 

  • Reduce indoor triggers: Many asthmatics have indoor triggers, such as dust mites and mold. Spending more time indoors, exposed to allergens, can aggravate your asthma. If you have indoor allergies, prepare for winter by taking proactive precautions in your house to reduce allergens.

  • Avoid exposure to smoke: Cigarette smoke is a major trigger for asthma. Quit smoking immediately if you’re a smoker yourself, or avoid going to places where you may get exposure to second-hand smoke. 

  • Avoid mites and mold allergies: To do so, keep your house clean and use clean, good-quality bedding. During windy weather, dust may be found on flat surfaces in the house, which needs regular cleaning with a damp cloth. Use cleaners to wash off molds found in and outside your house. Indoor plants should be kept out of bedrooms as they may cause molds if not maintained properly.

  • Limit mouth breathing: In cold conditions, when a patient breathes through their mouth, cold air streams into the respiratory tract and prompts an asthma attack. On the other hand, the nasal cavity warms the air, which reduces the possibility of irritation or attack.

  • Limit your exposure to air pollution: On days with extremely high pollution levels, try to stay indoors as much as possible. Ensure that your home is free of pollutants and use air purification devices to reduce pollution in the indoor air. When the air condition is poor, limit your outdoor pursuits and wear a pollutant-filtering mask if you must venture outside.

Diagnosis and Tests for Asthma

Physical Exam

Your doctor will check your personal and medical history as well as have a physical examination of your ears, eyes, nose, throat, and skin, and listen to your chest and lungs. An x-ray of your lungs or sinuses may be needed to check for other causes of your symptoms.

Pulmonary Function Tests

Lung function tests measure your breathing. They are used to notice how well you inhale (breathe in) and exhale (breathe out) air from your lungs. You may need to inhale a medication that opens your airways before and after the test.

Different types of pulmonary function tests for asthma diagnosis include:

  • Spirometry: You take a deep breath and blow air into a mouthpiece as fast and hard as you can. This measures how much and how fast you can breathe out. If the results show reduced lung function, you'll take medication to open your airways and repeat the test to see if your lung function improves.

  • FeNO Test: This test measures the amount of nitric oxide in your breath, which indicates airway inflammation. You blow into a handheld device for about 10 seconds and get immediate results. This test helps confirm asthma and detect inflammation.

  • Peak Flow Test: This portable device measures how well air is moving in and out of your lungs. You blow a quick blast of air into the mouthpiece to get a reading. It's used for diagnosis and daily monitoring at home.

Challenge Tests

These tests help diagnose asthma if other asthma tests are inconclusive or to identify specific triggers:

  • Methacholine Challenge: You inhale increasing doses of methacholine, which tightens airways if you have asthma. Spirometry tests measure changes in lung function.

  • Irritant Challenge: You're exposed to specific airborne triggers like perfume or smoke, then take a breathing test to see your response.

  • Exercise Challenge: You run on a treadmill while your oxygen and heart rate are monitored to see if exercise triggers your symptoms.

Consult our pulmonology hospital in Malleshwaram if you want to know more about what causes asthma disease. 

Asthma Treatment Plan

Asthma has no cure, but effective strategies can manage the triggers and symptoms of asthma to a great extent. 

  • Flu Vaccination

Getting an annual flu vaccination is important for asthma patients. Respiratory infections like the flu can worsen asthma symptoms and trigger severe attacks. The flu vaccine helps reduce this risk.

  • Inhalers

Inhalers are essential for asthma management. They deliver medication directly to the lungs for quick relief. Inhalers are safe when used as prescribed by your doctor.  

Common asthma disease treatments advised by our pulmonologists in Malleshwaram include bronchodilator inhalers and inhaled corticosteroids. They help reduce inflammation and up the obstructed airways by relaxing the muscles around them. Some patients may also need allergen-specific immunotherapy.

Lifestyle Modifications

Lifestyle changes can help control asthma symptoms, such as avoiding triggers, exercising regularly, and getting enough sun. Maintain a healthy diet and avoid foods that may trigger symptoms.

Visit Manipal Hospitals Malleshwaram and develop an Asthma Action Plan today!


Climate change-related higher temperatures additionally trigger increased ground-level ozone emission. Ozone is a potent lung irritant that can cause asthma attacks.

Asthma is a chronic disease, without a cure. However, proper medical treatment can help manage its symptoms. 

Some food items, like eggs, peanuts, shellfish, etc., may cause an allergic reaction in asthmatic people. 

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