Air pollution and asthma often go hand-in-hand. Pollutants such as ozone, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, and particulate matter may cause symptoms in people with respiratory ailments. Man-made pollutants result from fossil fuel combustion, power plants, heating devices such as wood stoves, industrial sources, manufacturing chemicals, storage tanks and other sources. Ozone has been associated with adverse respiratory effects for patients with asthma. Diesel exhaust particles have been shown to aggravate allergies. Such pollution may be contributing to the rise in the incidence of allergic respiratory disease. Sulfur dioxide in smog may increase airway constriction in asthma patients, especially during exercise.
Environmental control measures; these include:
- Limit outdoor activity during periods of poor air quality, high ozone, or smog levels.
- When air quality is poor, use air conditioning in the house and car rather that opening windows.
- Limit the use of wood stoves indoors.