Extreme heat can be dangerous for asthma & allergy sufferers

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. - Kansas and Missouri is locked in a bitter heat wave, making life miserable for people who suffer from asthma and allergies. 

Dr. Henry J. Kanarek, an allergist in Overland Park, Kan., is reporting an increase in patients struggling to breathe because of the heat.

"It's the heat and it's the dry conditions," Kanarek explained. "Because we haven't had much rain, the air is dirty with particles from the ground, from tires, and from gasoline fumes that make breathing extremely difficult especially for the elderly and children."

Phyllis Cole has suffered with allergies for four years. She said she's using her inhaler twice as much in the heat.

"I can't walk the dogs as long or work in my garden because I can hardly breathe in the heat," Cole said.

Kanarek reminded parents to pay attention to their children in the heat.

"Children at play and during sporting events may experience burning lungs, burning chest, coughing, wheezing and fatigue and that's a sign of respiratory problems," he cautioned.

Kanarek recommends limiting outdoor activities and making sure children and adults with asthma and other respiratory problems have their inhalers with them at all times.

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