Don’t let asthma get in the way of an active social life. There’s a lot you can do to stay comfortable, feel confident, and have fun on a date!
1. Plan an outing that’s easy on your lungs. Asthma inflames airways in your lungs, leaving you more sensitive to triggers that can make your symptoms flare up. Set the stage for a great date by suggesting activities that won’t expose you to your unique triggers. These may include tobacco smoke, pollen, pet dander, strong odors or fumes, and cold, windy weather. If you’re not sure what your triggers are, work with your healthcare provider to find out.
2. Steer clear of restaurant triggers, too. For some people, beverages like beer and wine and foods like shrimp, packaged potato products, and dried fruit can worsen asthma symptoms. If that’s you, stick with safe foods and drinks that you enjoy.
3. Gain confidence by following your action plan. Worried that coughing, shortness of breath, and other breathing problems will dampen your date? You’re not alone. More than 60% of U.S. adults with asthma don’t have good control of their lung condition. This can have a significant impact on everyday life. Manage your asthma—and stop symptoms from interrupting get-togethers—by developing an action plan with your provider and then following it.
4. Carry your rescue medicine—and don’t be afraid to use it. Adults and teens alike admit feeling a social stigma associated with asthma and inhalers. But don’t let embarrassment stop you from using your rescue medicine to take care of sudden, serious symptoms. Remember: Your health matters more than anyone’s opinion.
5. Talk with your provider about intimacy. Does asthma seem to put a damper on your love life? Open up to your healthcare provider and ask about strategies that could help. If you’re not sure how to approach the conversation, start with something as simple as, “I have a personal question I’d like to ask you…”