23 April 2019
Responding to warnings of a Saharan dust cloud by the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Dr Andy Whittamore, Clinical Lead at Asthma UK, said:
“Saharan dust could pose a serious risk to the 5.4million people in the UK with asthma. Dust and other types of air pollution are a well-known trigger for people with asthma. Toxic air can leave people struggling for breath and can cause wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath and even a life-threatening asthma attack.
“People with asthma must make sure they carry their reliever inhaler (usually blue) with them at all times in case their symptoms worsen. We also advise people with asthma to continue to manage their condition with their preventer inhaler (usually brown) as this will help to reduce the inflammation in their airways and make them less likely to react to asthma triggers. For advice on pollution and asthma, and how to check the pollution forecast in your area, visit www.asthma.org.uk/saharan-dust.”