What Types of Triggers Can Cause Asthma Symptoms?

There are small particles in the air called triggers. They make your sensitive airways react to them.

There are many triggers that may cause a person to have asthma symptoms. Take steps to try to reduce contact with your asthma triggers. Reducing contact with triggers may help you keep your asthma symptoms under control.

Triggers in and around your home:

  • Pet dander, which is dried skin and hair
  • Dust mites, which are little insects trapped in the dust
  • Cockroaches
  • Pollen
  • Mold

Triggers in the air:

  • Cigarette or tobacco smoke
  • Air pollution, such as smog, smoke, car fumes, and chemicals
  • Cold air or changes in weather
  • Strong odors and sprays, such as perfumes, household cleaners, or paint

Other types of triggers:

  • Exercise
  • Illnesses in your lungs and airways, such as a cold
  • Some medicines
  • Some chemicals in food or drinks
  • Strong emotions such as stress, excitement, or anger

These are just a few examples of triggers. It's important to know your triggers, because each person with asthma could have different triggers.


Keep a list of things that cause your asthma symptoms. Keep a record of when and what you were doing when you had symptoms. When you know your asthma triggers, you can try to stay away from them.

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