Tragic asthma death sparks Halloween fears

Louth parents warned about dangers of bonfire smoke

Dundalk Democrat

Reporter:

Dundalk Democrat

Tragic asthma death sparks Halloween fears

PARENTS in Louth are being warned that exposure to bonfires and fireworks could endanger children with asthma.

Over 11,000 children in Louth have been diagnosed with asthma, according to the Asthma Society of Ireland.

The warning comes following the tragic death of a nine-year-old girl in the United States whose asthma was triggered by attending a fireworks display.

The Asthma Society of Ireland are urging parents to be careful as smoke from bonfires and fireworks can cause serious breathing difficulties.

“Toxic fumes from bonfires and fireworks are bad for all our health. However, they can be particularly deadly to people with asthma,” said Asthma Society CEO Averil Power.

“Air pollution is a well-known asthma trigger that can result in serious attacks, hospitalisation and even death.

“At this time of year, it is very important everyone with asthma manages their condition carefully and tries to limit their exposure to toxic fumes.”

The Society has issued the following tips to help parents manage their children’s asthma this Halloween:

1. If your child’s asthma is triggered by smoke, make sure they keep their distance from bonfires and fireworks.

2. Ensure they take their preventer medication as prescribed. If they have stopped taking it for any reason, restart it now to protect them.

3. Make sure they carry their reliever (blue) inhaler at all times.

4. Make sure others (such as teachers and friends’ parents) are aware of their asthma and know what to do if their symptoms get worse.

Meanwhile, the Society is calling for a nationwide ban on smoky coal in a bid to improve overall air quality.