Cuenca is a beautiful city high up in the Andes Mountains. The climate here is spring like cool-warm during the day and cold at night. From what we have experienced the health care system is good here: good doctors/specialists and clean modern hospitals. The health concerns that we (more specifically Bryan) have experienced are somewhat odd. But because knowing our little story may help others, I’m going to make a short-story, well … long.
Problems With The Climate In Cuenca
When Bryan was a little boy in Canada he was sick every winter with bronchial infections. He was put on antibiotics every year to help fight the bronchial and related ear infections. As he became an adult these problems disappeared, but when we moved to Cuenca they started coming back.
After about 6 months of living here in Cuenca Bryan started developing a really strong cough, and his ears began giving him problems. His cough was so bad that it was interfering with his daily life. He was losing sleep and spending much time during the day in bed. We couldn’t figure out what the problem was because it was much warmer in Cuenca than it was in Canada during the winter. The recurrence of his childhood health problems did not make any sense to us.
We went to the doctor and he was put on antibiotics again and again. I was worried about the damage the antibiotics were doing to his system so we started seeking out a specialist that might be able to get to the root of the problem. We found an allergy specialist and after many tests we were told that the climate here was not good for him. The doctor felt that because the climate changes so much during the day (chilly in the morning, hot by the afternoon and cold at night) it was kind of shocking his system and causing an allergic reaction. We were told that moving to a warmer climate would be better for him.
Moving From Cuenca To A Small Town, And Back Again
We packed up and moved to Santa Isabel which a small town in Yunguilla Valley – a subtropical valley about an hour and twenty minutes away from Cuenca. As soon as we arrived in Santa Isabel Bryan’s health improved and his coughing totally disappeared. We were very happy about that and enjoyed life there, but after a year we needed to move back to Cuenca.
I was very worried about Bryan’s health problems coming back, but we thought that if we rented an apartment in a large building it would be warmer and he would be fine. We rented a furnished apartment in a large complex for about a month before moving all of our things back. A few days after we arrived his cough started coming back. The apartment was warm, so I realized that the difference must have been due to the dry air not just the temperature.
Solving The Climate Problem In Cuenca
I started boiling water to put humidity into the air and within a half an hour his coughing stopped! I was shocked at the difference such a simple thing could make, and relieved to know that we could successfully live in Cuenca once again.
When we found an apartment of our own and moved all of our things back we picked up a couple of humidifiers. We put one right beside the bed so that Bryan could breath humid air all night long. He no longer has the health problems he experienced when we arrived.
What To If The Dry Air Is Annoying You
The air is dry here in Cuenca, we didn’t notice it at first but after a number of months our skin started feeling really dry. We were waking up with a lot of mucus because the dry air was irritating our lungs and nasal passages. My nose was even cracking on the inside. I know, that sounds gross but if you are having similar problems you know how annoying these things can be.
I didn’t need the humidifier for a serious problem like Bryan had, but I’ve noticed that since we got it we no longer have the mucus problems and my nose is back to normal. We live in a second floor apartment, we have no problems with moisture. The humidifier does not cause any problems with mold because the air is dry the moisture put in the air during the night dries up during the following day.
I think Bryan’s lungs are damaged from the health problems he had as a child, so hopefully you won’t experience the same problems here in Cuenca as he had when we arrived. But if you are experiencing any problems due to the dry air, you might just need to pick up a humidifier.
Update (March 2013): After purchasing the above baby humidifier in Cuenca, we ordered the Crane Ee-8065 Humidifier and the AcuRite Indoor Humidity Monitor on Amazon. Both are highly recommended. Just be careful not to drop the humidity monitor on a tile floor. It tends to affect performance…