Allergic Asthma Overview

Common Allergic Asthma Triggers

When it comes to allergic asthma, the triggers are what set it apart from other types of asthma.

Certain triggers that bring on allergic asthma attacks include:

Identifying Your Triggers

Identifying your triggers can help you to get a diagnosis, know what triggers to avoid, explore treatment options, and better manage your symptoms. When identifying your triggers, remember:

PET DANDER is easily spread through the air. It can even be found in places with and without pets. There are no truly “hypoallergenic breeds” of dogs or cats ("hypoallergenic" means unlikely to cause an allergic reaction).

DUST MITES live in the bedroom more than anywhere else in the home. They are impossible to completely get rid of, no matter how much you clean.

COCKROACHES leave behind remains and debris such as saliva, feces, and shedding body parts that are easily swept up into the air and inhaled.

How to Avoid Allergic Asthma Triggers

Here are some ways to avoid allergic asthma triggers.

Pet Dander Trigger

  • Avoid being around dogs and cats; if you have a pet at home, take specific steps to limit exposure
  • Wash your hands and face after being around pets

Dust Mite Trigger

  • Consider using allergen-resistant covers for your mattress and pillows
  • Wash bedding, blankets, and stuffed animals in hot water (at least 130°F)
  • Replace wall-to-wall carpets with bare floors
  • Use a vacuum cleaner with either a double-layered microfilter bag or a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter.

Cockroach Trigger

  • Keep all food in closed containers
  • Use a garbage can with secure lid
  • When dusting, use a damp rag or mop—a dry cloth just stirs up roach remains and dust 
  • Repair leaky faucets pipes—wet areas attract roaches

If triggers like pet dander or dust mites are bringing on asthma symptoms that can lead to an attack, you may want to talk to an asthma specialist about allergic asthma. An allergist specializes in diseases of the immune system (including allergic diseases such as allergic asthma) and a pulmonologist specializes in diseases of the lungs and breathing (including asthma). Both can diagnose allergic asthma.