If you have asthma, then having an inhaler on hand, is a good first start, but you should also look into how you can prevent attacks. While every attack is not preventable, taking steps to reduce the amount of irritants in your home can help to reduce your number of attacks. Since the irritants have to be airborne before they enter your lungs, upgrading the air filter in your heating and cooling system may seem like a good way to reduce airborne irritants, but there are some budgetary factors that you should consider before you upgrade your filter.
Suffocating Your AC
An AC unit is designed to work with an air filter that allows sufficient airflow to move through the AC and keep it running properly. If you put in an air filter that has a tighter screen, it will remove more and smaller particles from the air in your home, but it can also restrict airflow. Moreover, an air filter that removes more contaminants costs more than the normal filter and it gets dirty quicker. This means, you will end up paying more to replace filters, and if you don't change the filter frequently enough, a dirty filter can reduce airflow to the point that it causes problems for your AC unit. Thus, while an upgraded air filter may remove particles that could irritate your lungs and cause an asthma attack, the cost may be too high to justify the upgraded filter.
A Room Air Cleaner
A better option may be to use a room air cleaner. Room air cleaners will only clean the air in the room where the cleaner is placed, but they should keep the air in that room clean enough to reduce asthma attacks caused by air irritants. To use your air cleaner to its best advantage, you should either place it in the room where you spend most of your time or in the room where you most frequently have attacks. A good option is your bedroom since you should be spending at least eight hours a day in your bedroom while you sleep. Running an air cleaner should be more cost effective than trying to keep the air in your home clean by upgrading the air filter on your AC system.
If you are wondering if an air cleaner would be a good choice for your home, you could talk to an asthma specialist. He or she should help to provide you with the information you need to make an informed choice.