JCS Lung & Sleep Centre : A7 Madhuban (Preet Vihar) Vikas Marg New Delhi - 110 092

Shortness of Breath

Shortness of Breath during Weather Changes

Shortness of Breath: “How’s the weather today?” This is an oft-repeated question that has major implications for people with lung disease. Whether it’s summer or winter, rainy or windy, people with lung disease should pay attention to weather reports because sudden changes in weather, as well as extreme weather conditions, can provoke lung symptoms.

Hot and Humid Weather

Hot weather can be especially difficult for people with respiratory illnesses. In a 2013 study from Johns Hopkins University, researchers found an association between rising temperatures and the number of emergency hospital admissions for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and respiratory tract infections in people 65 and older.

Although the reason behind this correlation is unclear, breathing hot air is known to promote airway inflammation and exacerbate respiratory disorders such as COPD. Hot weather can also be a trigger for those who suffer from asthma.

Because people with asthma already have inflamed airways, weather is more likely to have an effect, as breathing warm, moist air causes a narrowing of the airways in asthmatics. Air pollution may also be a factor affecting summer breathing in people with lung disease, as an increase in ozone from smog is often seen in the summer months.


Do enthusiastic or mental elements have an influence on asthma?

Shortness of Breath

Cold and Dry Weather

Cold weather, and especially cold air, can also be harmful to your lungs and health. Cold air is often dry air, and for many people, especially those with chronic lung disease, that can cause trouble. Dry air can irritate the airways of people suffering from lung diseases.This can cause wheezing, coughing, and shortness of breath.

Be Active and Ready

While you can’t control the weather, you can reduce the impact it has on your lung disease symptoms. Stay ahead of the curve by monitoring the weather forecast and identifying your triggers before you head out. You can comfortably enjoy your favorite outdoor activities all year round by keeping the following tips in mind:

  • If it’s cold outside, wrap a scarf around your nose and mouth to warm the air before it enters your lungs. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth.
  • Access to air conditioning can be important during the hot summer months, so add air conditioning to your home if you can.
  • Monitor air quality forecasts to stay healthy. Air pollution can be very high in both winter and summer and people with asthma and other lung diseases are at a higher risk of being affected by air pollution.
  • Remember to take your prescribed controller medications—another important way to reduce the potential impact of changing weather conditions on your health.
  • If you have asthma or COPD, always keep quick-relief medicines with you. Stop the activity and use your quick-relief medicine as soon as you start having symptoms.

To learn more about how to manage COPD or asthma symptoms, Find a Better Breathers Club near you or learn more about how to manage COPD and asthma at the JCS Institute.

Best Tips for Ease of Breathing in Summer

Best Tips for Ease of Breathing in Summer

Breathing in Summer: Most people with chronic lung diseases are aware that an extreme increase in temperature, that is, below freezing or above 90 degrees, can trigger exacerbations. Three factors can affect your ability to breathe in the heat – heat, sunlight, and humidity.

When it is heating up, your body overworks as it tries to stay cool. You sweat more, which can result in dehydration and shortness of breath.

Sunlight causes certain chemical reactions with the pollutants in the air that cause an increase in ozone. This can result in difficulty breathing, a burning sensation in your nose and throat, coughing, and wheezing.


Can winter cause breathing problems?

Best Tips for Ease of Breathing in Summer

Does warm air hold more moisture or cold air?

High humidity levels can make it even more difficult to catch your breath. Warm air contains more moisture than cold air, reducing the amount of oxygen present. As humidity increases, it’s more difficult to breathe denser air if you have chronic lung problems.

It can be frustrating, but there’s a lot you can do to help ease your symptoms during the summer:
  • Avoid heat. Try to stay in an air-conditioned place as much as possible.
  • Stay away from sunlight, especially from 11 am to 3 pm. When it’s hottest.
  • Reduce strenuous activity. That doesn’t mean you can skip your pulmonary rehab, though. Rehab will help even on hot days.
  • Drink cold water and avoid alcohol as it can lead to dehydration.
  • Eat normally, but break up meals into smaller portions, reduce your salt intake, and eat cold foods like fruits and vegetables.
  • Use a handheld fan or a large fan. Do not apply large fans directly to your face as they can be very dusty.
  • Summer is an opportunity to relax, so take it easy—and stay cool when it’s hot and humid!