In 2013 Rotorua was reported as being among the country's worst asthma hospitalisation rates. Smoking, obesity, not taking inhalers properly, damp cold housing and social issues were reported as the biggest contributors to asthma and other respiratory problems.
Overall, children are more commonly affected by asthma. Māori and Pacific children have higher, more severe rates of symptoms and are twice as likely to require hospitalisation. With that in mind, Korowai Aroha wanted to provide some helpful tips to protect you this winter:
- Stay hydrated, drink plenty of water
- Eat more wholesome foods and less processed food, ensure you limit sugar too
- Exercise regularly; wearing a scarf over your nose and mouth can help warm the air before you breathe it in resulting in less irritated breathing tubes
- Wash your hands, teach your children that washing their hands helps to kills the bugs that cause colds and flu
- Insulate your home from the cold as much as you can or find suitable accommodation which is warm and dry
- Ensure you are taking regular asthma medication correctly and get your annual flu vaccinations
- If you don’t know what your inhalers are for, find out
- Take steps to keep your nose as healthy as possible.
For more information email Noelene@korowai.org.nz