Have you noticed all the wood smoke in the area? If you haven't maybe it doens't bother you but for many in the Yakima Valley it makes for a very unhealthy time of year. Officials at the Yakima County Health District says many people especially those with breathing problems need to stay indoors and out of the smoke. The Yakima Health District’s Health Officer, Dr. Teresa Everson says “In general, wearing dust or surgical masks is not enough to filter the air that you breath. Young children, the elderly, and those with chronic lung or heart conditions such as asthma, COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and angina should limit time outdoors, especially heavy physical activity outdoors, when air quality is poor.”
To avoid experiencing symptoms when air quality is poor ensure that:
• Windows, doors, and vents are closed while at home and driving in your car
• You are not adding to indoor pollution by using vacuums, candles, fireplaces, or gas stoves
• You create a clean room in the house using High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters for health impaired family members.
Call your health care provider if you have any questions or your symptoms worsen.