About me (in regards to this blog)

I have allergies. I have asthma. I’ve had problems with allergies for a large part of my life. When I finally got allergy tested as an adult I was told I was allergic to:

Dogs, cats, mold, dust mites, dust, mildew, tobacco, cockroaches, trees, weeds, grass (I’m not allergic to ragweed!) Less than a year later I was diagnosed with asthma. I think I’ve had very mild asthma all my life and things like allergies, sinus infections and finally bronchitis made it worse to the point of noticeable. (All this diagnosing occurred when I had some awesome benefits.)

When I had a full time job with awesome benefits I was on prescriptions to help control both for a period of time. As my health improved I dropped the asthma medicine – also figured out it helped only so much after I got to a certain point. Fast forward a few years and I’m only taking OTC allergy medicine because I’m a broke, unemployed, full time college student. I have a wonderful scare with going to a county (I think?) hospital ER for an asthma attack. I go back on asthma medicine for a little while – for as long as it lasts. Then I start exercising almost daily. My asthma improves, triggers less. Fast forward a little more. I find that I am in better shape – but I’m hitting the metaphorical brick wall. It seems I can’t get my asthma any better by myself and I’m also having other problems… so I decide to start homeopathy treatment with a homeopathic doctor (maybe I’ll see about explaining the homeopathy later). But, in a nutshell homeopathy is supposed to be able to help pretty much with all my problems.

Fast forward again to the present or almost present. The homeopathy has indeed helped my allergies as far as I can tell. However, the only improvement I see in my asthma is when I stay on a routine of school – home – occasional restaurant – grocery store. Anything additional and I’m likely to have my asthma trigger. Electronics stores especially. And I know my problems could be worse, much worse. I’m not on oxygen treatments for my asthma for example. Also, at this point, I’m fed up with the traditional, normal medical system in our country. It needs changed, but that’s easier said than done. (Channeling Captain Obvious there for a second.) I have no interest in being treated by a “normal” doctor at this point.

In the past my asthma was only triggered by my allergies. Now it seems that chemicals trigger my asthma too.

I’ve come to realize or learn:

1. not all public restrooms are public because not everyone can safely use them.

2. there are hundreds of chemicals that can trigger asthma

3. Asthma is an epidemic in this country

4. the worry of an asthma attack or allergy trigger can cause a great deal of unnecessary stress (I say unnecessary because people should be able to avoid this type of stress)

5. Being allergic to tobacco sucks even more than I initially realized. Smoking laws – like where to smoke outside a building – aren’t always enforced or obviously present.

6. There is not enough awareness about adult asthma. There are organizations and associations working to help people, but nothing seems organized and nothing seems readily available to the public. There doesn’t seem to be anything easily attainable.

These are some of the reasons why I’d like to see things change. People with allergies and asthma need a bigger, better voice, need someone to listen to them. I’d like to do something regarding public awareness, available information and asthma… but don’t know what to do or where to start. I might ultimately do a graduate project/thesis/study of some sort. But that wouldn’t happen this year.

I figure this blog will help me collect information and resources online as well as organize my thoughts on the subject…. especially since I’m still learning.

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~ by ofia on March 17, 2008.

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