Asthma UK launch campaign to show how a scarf can save a life

Cold air can trigger asthma attacks

By Natalie Healey

It’s chilly out there right now, so we hope you’re wrapped up warm.

Did you know that cold air can actually trigger asthma attacks in as many as three-quarters of people with the condition? And with one in 11 people in the UK affected, that’s a lot of people at risk.

Last year, we reported on an Asthma UK campaign, which encouraged social media users to share a seasonal selfie to help raise awareness of the dangers cold winter air can pose to asthma sufferers.

Celebrities such as Nadiya Hussain, Anton Du Beke, Andrew Castle and Karen Pickering tweeted a #Scarfie – a selfie with a scarf covering their nose and mouth – to raise awareness for the charity.

This year, the campaign is back and hoping to raise even more awareness about the importance of wearing a scarf for asthma sufferers.

Hope you’ve got your scarves on! Makes all the difference on chilly days like today @asthmauk #scarfie pic.twitter.com/VDw3ost9U5

— Nadiya Jamir Hussain (@BegumNadiya) January 20, 2017

How a scarf can help

The campaign advises that wrapping a scarf loosely over your nose and mouth warms up the air that you breathe in, which will help prevent cold air irritating the airways and potentially triggering an asthma attack.

Dr Andy Whittamore, Asthma UK’s in-house GP, says: “Living in the UK means that cold weather is impossible to avoid over winter, but if people have asthma, simply wrapping a scarf around their nose and mouth can warm up the air before they breathe it in, reducing their risk of having an asthma attack… We are urging everyone – whether they have asthma or know someone that does – to share the message that something as simple as a scarf could save a life.”

Every 10 seconds someone has a potentially life-threatening asthma attack in the UK. Three people die from an asthma attack every day – and, tragically, two thirds of these deaths are preventable. January is the deadliest month of the year, with an average of 154 asthma-related deaths (compared to an average of 73 in August).

So next time you’re walking in the chilly outdoors, why not take a #Scarfie to cheer up your social media followers and raise awareness at the same time.

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