Going into Winter with Asthma & COPD
What you can do to keep your home healthy
Keep your home dry and warm by doing the following:
- Dry clothes outside, do not bring wet clothes inside to dry.
- If you use a clothes dryer ensure it is vented outside, if not consider using the washing line/clothes horse outside.
- If you have a dehumidifier, now is a good time to start using it.
- Always use extractor fans in the bathroom or kitchen when in use – if you have no extractor fan open a window to let moisture out.
- Open windows and doors for 10 – 15 minutes each day at the warmest time of the day to lower moisture levels.
- Keep your home consistently heated between 18 - 25°C
- Contact you power provider if cost is concerning you and ask them for help.
- Block drafts coming through doors and windows by using draft stops or roll up old towels to stop the cold air coming in.
- Open curtains during the day to let the sun in and close them before it gets dark to keep the heat in.
- Keep surfaces clean. In particular thing like light switches, door handles, remote controls and benches.
- Ask everybody to leave their shoes at the door - germs grab on to anything.
- Never put handbags, school bags or grocery bags on benches unless you disinfect the surface after.
- Wash hands regularly and thoroughly – make sure your children know how to wash their hands well.
What to do if you have flu symptoms
If you get a cold or flu, discuss with your GP the recommended use of Salbutamol (medication):
2 puffs, 4 hourly from day one of the cold till it settles, then stop (the normal dose of Salbutamol is less than two puffs weekly)
- Drink plenty of fluids, stay indoors and rest. DO NOT GO TO WORK or SCHOOL. Do not mix with others. Use Panadol as prescribed for fever
- Ask those who have a cold to stay away until they are better
- If you are taking Symbicort – take your normal twice daily dose and extra puffs as prescribed by your GP
- If you do not improve or become worse contact your GP immediately to make an appointment - explain you are sick before you go.