Indoor Pollution is Bad for Asthma and Other Tips for Asthma Sufferers

Indoor Pollution is Bad for Asthma and Other Tips for Asthma Sufferers

Indoor air pollution is one of the most common causes of an asthma attack, so understanding the possible triggers can make the home a more pleasant, safe and relaxing place.

Indoor Pollution is Bad for Asthma and Other Tips for Asthma Sufferers
Clean your house

Why Indoor Pollution is Bad for Asthma

Small liquid, or solid, airborne particles are easily breathed into the lungs, and in people with asthma this causes extreme irritation in the delicate lung tissue. This in turn causes a restriction of the airways that leads to coughing or wheezing, a feeling of tightness in the chest and difficulty in breathing. Allergic reactions to common household products can also trigger asthmatic attacks, particularly in children.

Practical Steps to Reduce Indoor Air Pollution

The first step towards creating cleaner, less harmful indoor air is to remove those items that you know are irritants. If you're not sure what's triggering an asthma attack in your home you may need to experiment a little, removing or reducing use of one irritant at a time and watching for improvement in the sufferer.

Perfumes and Air Fresheners

These commonly trigger asthma attacks, with some people reporting that plug-in air fresheners are particularly risky. Try running the air conditioning to freshen the air in the home, or open a window and let in fresh air unless the pollen outside will make matters worse. Avoid wearing perfume or, if you can tolerate a little, try spraying it only on wrists or behind knees so you don't directly inhale the fumes.

Dust Mites

Keep house dust down by using a damp cloth rather than spray polish on sealed surfaces. Use mattress and pillow protectors to keep beds and linen dust and mite-free. Use non-aerosol cleaners for wood or shiny furniture.


Many people are surprised to find they're allergic to the fumes given off by burning candles. It may be the compounds used in the manufacturing of the candle, or it may be perfume, whether it's an added scent or the natural scent particles in the wax. Either way, the answer is to switch to flameless candles so you can still enjoy the ambiance but carry on breathing at the same time. As an added bonus, flameless candles are much safer in the home, especially where there are children or pets.

Asthma can be debilitating and frightening for children and adults alike. Once triggers are known it's easier to keep attacks to a minimum, and simple solutions such as using flameless candles or non-perfumed cleaning products are a small price to pay for easier breathing.