A trigger is something that makes asthma worse. Triggers are different for everyone and knowing which ones affect asthma in your family can help with avoiding them whenever possible.

Here are some examples of asthma triggers:

  • Dust mites  - dust mites can be found nearly anywhere, but especially in carpet, bedding and furniture.  You can reduce dust mites by vacuuming, dusting and changing your sheets frequently.
  • Pollen  - know the times of the year when pollens that affect your asthma are released to avoid them where possible.
  • Mould and fungal spores  - try to remove mould and mildew where you can and keep your house warm, dry and well ventilated.
  • Exercise and weather  - cold weather and excercise can sometimes bring on asthma symptoms.  Wrap up warm when outside and always keep your blue inhaler nearby when exercising.
  • Smoke  - do not smoke inside (including in cars) and, if possible, change the clothes you were smoking in when you are around children with asthma as this can trigger asthma symptoms.
  • Infections  - colds and viruses can bring on, or worsen, asthma symptoms.  People are more likely to get colds and viruses during winter.  If this is the case in your family try to see your doctor at the beginning of winter to make sure you have the right (and enough) medicines to treat asthma during this time.  You may also want to ask about a flu jab (if this is appropriate).