Tuesday 22 October 2019

Asthma sufferers urged to take extra caution as Storm Emma approaches Ireland

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Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Asthmatics in Ireland are being urged to exercise caution with the incoming cold snap.

470,000 people in Ireland have asthma and the Asthma Society of Ireland is asking those to take additional precautions to ensure they remain safe as the country prepares for an unprecedented drop in temperature over the coming days.

Kevin Kelly, the advocacy and communications manager at the Asthma Society of Ireland said: “Fluctuating weather conditions, common colds, viral infections and flu can cause symptoms of asthma and can bring on an asthma attack, so it is important to use a reliever inhaler before going out on cold windy days and to wrap a scarf around your face to reduce the effect of the cold air.”

Additional advice includes wearing a scarf over your nose and mouth, and remaining warm and dry by wearing gloves, a scarf, a hat and carrying an umbrella; having your inhaler on you at all times and to continue taking prescribed medication.

The cold weather can bring on triggers for people with asthma, including chest infections.

Similarly, pharmacists are advising consumers to have an adequate supply of essential medication should pharmacies experience disruption with deliveries in the aftermath of Storm Emma.

Asthma nurse specialists are available to guide anyone affected on the society's advice line on 1800 44 54 64.

Daragh Connolly, President of the Irish Pharmacy Union (IPU) said: “The extremely cold weather and snow storms predicted for Ireland may make it difficult for people to visit their local community pharmacy.

“While all pharmacies will try to remain open during the poor weather, there is a risk of disruption if individual pharmacies are forced to close. Similarly, disruption to supply could occur in localised areas, if road conditions are poor.

“Many of our patients rely on essential medication and repeat prescriptions become part of their regular routine. However, with the predicted disruption it may not be possible to access these medicines in the coming days. We are therefore urging everyone to ensure they have enough of their essential medication to last them until the beginning of next week.”

Mr Connolly also urged members of the public to check in with elderly family and neighbours to ensure they have their medication and to intervene by contacting their pharmacy if they need assistance.

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