My girlfriend suffers from chronic asthma, which has resulted in nearly annual hospital stays. She found a specialist that seemed to have a temporary solution- daily Advair and Singulair medication (high dose) and Prednisone treatments every few months during recurring problems.
She has been experiencing extreme depression, suicidal thoughts, anxiety, loss of energy, to the point that she has lost a job and finds it hard to even get up for the day, which has compounded the psychological effects. I come from a science background so I understand the concept of 'correlation does not equal causation' and the issue still awaits clinical proof, however she was an extremely motivated hard working person before being put on the high doses of asthma medications.
For the sake of helping her through these times, I would love for her to be able to try to slowly reduce the dosages (some of the medications cause a backlash if stopped abruptly) just to see if there would be a positive effect on the psychological side. Unfortunately we live in an area with above average humidity and allergen levels that spike to extremes. She is afraid to get off of the drugs, justifiably, because without an alternative she could end up in the hospital again hooked up to a breathing machine, which is traumatic enough on its own.
The first option that I could see is to find alternative controls for her, even if the psychological effects are unrelated to the drugs, persistent use of steroids is probably bad for her body, and she is not even 25 yet and has been using them for years now.
The second option would be to move to an area of the US that has lower than average humidity and lower levels of allergens. If she could live in an area without the asthma triggers, presumably she might not need to be on the drugs at all, or could reduce the dosages to levels that could have less negative side effects.
I would like to know if anyone else has been in a similar situation, what their solution or attempts were, and how successful they were. Are their viable alternatives to the steroid, Singulair, Advair (and similar chemical) solutions? Could a move to a dry place with less mold spores and pollen be the answer? She is still working with the doctors, of course, but a few have admitted that she is the worst case they have seen and I hope to find a little advice from anyone else that has faced similar hurdles or even advice from people with other ideas. I apologize for the extreme length of this post but it seemed necessary to cover all the details. Thank you for reading though, and let me know your thoughts!