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Brushfires Cause Anxiety For Asthma and Allergy Sufferers

The recent wildfires erupting in Southern California, filling the region’s air with smoke and ash, have millions of Californians feeling the effects and wondering what they can do to stay well and safeguard against bad air quality. Wildfires can often put allergy and asthma sufferers on edge as the air quality worsens, but there are things you can do to try and avoid complications.

"It is only natural to have concerns about what you're breathing in when you can see the extent of ash and billowing smoke around our region," said Francene Lifson, Executive Director, Asthma & Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA). "Individuals with asthma and severe allergies need to take extra precautions and should keep their medications nearby."

In effected areas of Southern California during this time of fire outbreaks, government agencies have declared outdoor activity unhealthy for all groups so it is a good idea to stay inside. At anytime during a nearby wildfire in any area, it is also smart to avoid running utilities that bring in outdoor air into your home. The air quality can contribute to immediate health risks such as triggering an asthma attack or intensifying allergies, since the winds fueling the fires are also spreading allergens like pollen. Others who normally do not worry about air quality may develop headaches or pulmonary infections so take extra caution. All of these health considerations can be effectively managed by keeping away from the hazardous air.

Residents of Southern California can contact AAFA at (800) 624-0044 to obtain additional information. The Asthma & Allergy Foundation of America is a non-profit voluntary health agency dedicated to improving the quality of life of people with asthma and allergies through education, advocacy and community outreach.

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