The time of intensified travel related vacations and vacations is approaching. Not only healthy people want to travel and relax, but also those who struggle every day with diseases, often chronic, which include bronchial asthma.
Travel has now become one of the most popular forms of recreation and leisure. During travel and during vacation, as follows from my observations, patients often forget about the pain. Visual sensations, change of environment, contact with another person-all this makes patients be friends with the disease and cope with it very well, of course, provided that they are aware of their disease and the limitations arising in it. Also, asthma patients can go on vacation, have a good time and relax.
Asthma refers to diseases that are difficult to treat.
However, asthma, given its chronic and changeable course, requires constant treatment, affects all aspects of human activity and the life situation of the patient. In turn, a number of objective and subjective factors that make up this situation can affect the course of the disease itself. But thanks to the achievements of modern medicine and pharmacology, we are able to control it to such an extent that patients can lead a normal life, play sports and rest, travel almost without complaints.
A number of specialized publications are increasingly highlighting the fact that the impact of asthma on everyday life varies greatly in individual patients and varies between periods of the disease.
So, it is assumed that even worse, symptom control has an adverse effect on their quality of life. The reason for this situation is mainly a lack of knowledge about the disease, especially the methods of its treatment. The continuous improvement of the quality of medical care for patients, the training of patients and the education of the whole society are also important issues.
As the Professor shows the level of medical education of Poles about chronic diseases, including asthma. Is this sufficient?
There is a growing interest of the Polish society in education about the prevention of chronic diseases. The poles are finally starting to take care of their health, which makes me very happy as a doctor.
Education brings many benefits, as it allows lay people to diagnose the symptoms of the disease and encourages patients to seek medical help and follow the recommended treatment. Wider knowledge of the disease, asthma in society also reduces the sense of stigma in patients and helps to dispel misconceptions about it. Detailed advice on asthma and its treatment should be provided to school teachers, instructors and sports coaches. To do this, many organizations and societies publish relevant materials, conduct schools for patients with asthma and other allergic diseases.
Clear information about asthma is also useful for employers. Patients with asthma can perform most professions, since they are healthy, play sports, travel… However, in some cases, it is necessary to be careful.
Returning to the main topic of our conversation-what should first take care of a patient with asthma, going on vacation?
Before a vacation or trip, it is very important to see your doctor, who should be consulted about your vacation plans. The doctor will advise what medications and in what quantities (used chronically and temporarily), the patient should take with him. Must instruct about the need for medicines during the journey, and their acceptance. It will also inform you where you can get medical help if necessary.
How should the patient act in special situations?
In special situations, individualization of asthma treatment and the use of written plans of patient participation in treatment is very important. This allows them to cope in most situations, but leaving home for the duration of the trip may require a special plan of action. And here the responsibility for the patient is reduced, of course, to the attending physician, whose task is to inform him in a timely manner about the state of health. The doctor is the reference point for the patient, both for treatment and prevention.
When we travel, we change our place of residence and therefore our environment. We are thus in contact with allergens, which are known to be among the most common causes of worsening asthma symptoms.
It may be recalled that allergens that exacerbate asthma symptoms mainly include plant pollen, mites, animal hair, food and chemicals. For people with hypersensitivity to plant pollen allergens, the best activity is above water, so swimming, surfing, boating, sailing camps or kayaking
Plant pollen and pollen allergens fixed on carriers (soot particles, starch grains from pollen salon) fall through the entire season of dust into the respiratory tract. This leads to the further development of the disease and the reaction of other organs. People who are allergic to plant pollen, planning the time and place of vacation should be sure to keep track of the calendar of pollination of plants and messages about the concentration of pollen. And persons who are allergic to year-round allergens, such as ticks, should prepare well the place (the appropriate direction of the path) to which they are going. An asthma sufferer should remember that when he is in another house, in another room, there will be other allergenic conditions. It so happens that these changes are favorable, such as fleeing from house dust mites surrounding him every day (in his own home), but there may also be adverse changes. Very unfavorable place for asthmatics are the centers of large cities, where a high concentration of exhaust gases from Diesel engines, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, as under their influence can be expected exacerbations of the disease.
Remember that in people with respiratory hypersensitivity, already small amounts of allergens can lead to asthma attacks. This, however, should not limit the activity of the patient obsessed by protecting him from contact with allergens. Its activity should be directed on improvement of state of health. Very important in the fight against asthma is to work on building self-esteem of the patient and overcoming the problems associated with the disease. The patient with asthma is experiencing many difficult emotions. A sudden fit of suffocation causes him great anxiety and fear. And this causes an acceleration of the heart rate, a secondary decrease in breathing, dry mouth and increased muscle tone.
Professor, in this case, where and how should people who are sensitive to pollen allergens rest?
For people with hypersensitivity to plant pollen allergens, the best outdoor activities are on and off the water, so swimming, surfing, boat trips, sailing camps or kayaking. The surface of water is ten times easier to catch dust suspended in the air (including pollen grains of plants) than a solid surface. This, and the lack of pollen emission sources, makes large bodies of water suitable for recreation for Allergy sufferers. It is worth knowing that the pollen seasons of the same allergens in different parts of the world can be shifted in time. In the North-Eastern regions of the country and on the coast the season of pollination of grasses and grains is postponed for 14-20 days compared to the Central part of the country, and in the high mountains the plants bloom even after a month.
Travel agencies are tempted by organized excursions, what is a safe form of travel for patients with asthma?
I definitely don’t recommend organized tours. As a rule, have a strained to the limit opportunity plan that connects with great haste. It is better to go on vacation alone and in a place where you can relax and watch at your own pace, the delights of nature and culture, preferably with a loved one (smile).
There is still a question of means of transport, which should be chosen sick with asthma, going on vacation.
As a rule, there are no restrictions for asthmatics in choosing a mode of transport. A patient with bronchial asthma can get a seizure of suffocation, as in an airplane, train or car, it will be enough to have the appropriate medication. For complete safety, it is useful to inform your neighbor about the disease, and on Board the plane in addition to the stewardess.