The Best Places to Live with Asthma
Various factors contribute to how well your asthma is managed. For example, your environment may be a factor in controlling your asthma. In fact, where you live may influence how often you develop asthma symptoms. Although there may not be one perfect city for people with asthma, the list below includes some of the best places to live with asthma.
Before we take a look at the best cities, let’s get a better understanding of what exactly triggers asthma symptoms. Understanding what affects your condition will allow you to make healthy decisions around managing your symptoms.
Understanding Asthma Triggers
It’s helpful to learn a little about asthma triggers to understand why a city is considered good for asthma. Asthma occurs due to constriction and inflammation of the airways. Some people may have asthma symptoms frequently. Other people may only develop symptoms once they are exposed to their triggers.
Asthma triggers vary and include stress, exercise, and respiratory infections. But there are also environmental triggers, such as smoke, cold air, and air pollution. Specific communities may be better for people with asthma because of the weather or air quality.
The Asthma and Allergy Foundation releases a list of the most challenging places for people living with asthma each year, but it does not list the best places. However, there are certain factors that may make a city good or bad for asthma, including:
- Air quality
- Smoking laws
- Average temperature
- Humidity level
- Pollen and other allergen levels
Cities to Consider
Although where you live is not the only factor that affects your asthma, it can play a part in how frequent and severe asthma symptoms are. Below are some of the best places to live with asthma.
In addition to its scenery and crisp air, Bangor, Maine, is an asthma-friendly city. The American Lung Association compiles a list of cities with the best air quality, and Bangor tops the list.
Poor air quality can trigger asthma symptoms in some people. Bangor tied for the number one spot for the cleanest air in a metropolitan area of the country.
San Diego, California
California is one of the best states in the country in terms of weather. Summers are not too hot and winters are mild, which makes it good for people with asthma. In addition, it tends to have low humidity levels.
Significant fluctuations in weather can trigger asthma symptoms. Also, very cold air is a common problem if you have asthma, especially if you try to exercise outside. Since San Diego has great weather most of the year, it can be a good location to live if you have asthma.
Bellingham, Washington, is located about 50 miles southwest of Vancouver. Although it is not as well-known as Seattle, this Washington city might be an excellent place to live if you have asthma.
It also made the American Lung Association’s list for good air quality. It was one of four United States cities in 2019 that earned top marks for both low ozone levels and year-round particle pollution levels. Bellingham had no days in the unhealthy level for either particle pollution or ozone.
Particle pollution is solid and liquids that are suspended in the air. It may include dust, soot, and smoke. High levels of particle matter in the air often mean increased asthma symptoms.
Boise, Idaho, is a good overall choice for people with asthma. Boise has good air quality, and usually has a low pollen count. It also has a low poverty rate. Communities with high poverty tend to have increased asthma prevalence.
Cape Coral, Florida
Although Cape Coral does have some pollen at certain times of the year, it can still be a good place to live if you have asthma. It also made the American Lung Association’s list for clean air, and it had low levels of particle pollution. Cape Coral also has a mild climate year-round. Steady temperatures without big fluctuations are often best for those that have asthma.
San Francisco, California
The city by the bay is one of the most famous California communities. It is also a good place to live for people with asthma. San Francisco has a moderate year-round temperature, which helps keep allergens, such as pollen, low. It also has some of the toughest smoking laws in the country.
Cigarette smoke is a very common trigger for asthma symptoms. Additionally, the San Francisco area has some of the top medical centers in the country for asthma treatment, including Sanford and UCSF.
Provo, Utah can be a good place for asthma due to its low humidity level. Although humidity is not a trigger for everyone with asthma, it can make it more difficult to breathe. High levels of humidity can cause an increase in allergens, such as mold and dust mites.
Managing Asthma Wherever you Live
You may be one step ahead of your asthma if you live in one of the above communities. However, it is essential to learn how to manage asthma symptoms regardless of where you call home. Consider the following tips:
- Take asthma medications as prescribed
- Identify your asthma triggers
- Follow your asthma action plan when symptoms develop
- Talk to your asthma specialist if you have frequent symptoms
- Know what to do in an asthma emergency