Some asthma episodes can be prevented by avoiding or minimizing exposure to triggers.
These include environmental triggers such as:
Environmental pollutants (especially when pollution and ozone levels are high)
If exercise triggers your asthma:
Breathe warm, humidified air before and during exercise
Use inhalers before exercise
Eliminating allergens at home often can go a long way to control asthma symptoms.
If dust mites are a trigger:
Encase mattresses in airtight enclosures
Clean your home frequently
Wash bedding frequently in very hot water
Remove carpets and heavy draperies from sleeping areas
Some people may need to avoid animals entirely. Others may benefit from taking preventive medicine before an anticipated exposure to animals. Pet owners should keep pets out of bedrooms and bathe them regularly.
Those who are affected by pollens should:
Stay indoors whenever possible
Use air conditioning
Keep windows closed during high pollen season
Prevention also means learning to anticipate future attacks. Monitor your symptoms and peak-flow readings to help identify a coming attack before symptoms develop. This allows you to adjust your medications to prevent an attack.
Early signs or symptoms of an asthma flare-up include:
Coughing more often
Increased mucus or phlegm
Becoming short of breath quickly with exertion or exercise
Developing a sinus headache or fever
Having symptoms that resemble a cold:
Runny or congested nose