General Health Conditions Asthma

What is Asthma?

  • A lung disease. It can be life threatening.
  • It is a chronic. If your child has it, he/she has to live with it everyday.
  • Causes breathing problems - called attacks or episodes of asthma.
It is important to:

  • Take your child's asthma seriously.
  • Have him/her take his/her asthma medicine as prescribed.
  • When asthma symptoms don't stop, get help!
  • Recognize triggers and try to avoid them
Know your child's asthma symptoms:

  • "I cough a lot while I exercise or even when I rest after exercising."
  • "I have shortness of breath."
  • "I make a wheezing sound when I breathe."
  • "I feel tightness in my chest.'
Symptoms are clues that your child is having an asthma attack.

What to do in case of a mild asthma attack?

When your child says his/her chest feels tight, he/she is coughing. or wheezing when he/she breathes, he should take his asthma medicine as prescribed by attending physician. Usually the air tubes in the lungs will open in minutes. Ask your physician how long it should take. If it is not working like it is supposed to, call you attending physician.

What to do in case of a severe attack?

If the child should become breathless. He/She may have trouble talking. His/Her neck muscles may become tight. The child's lips and fingernails may have a bluish or grayish color. The skin around the ribs may be sucked in. Asthma medication should be given immediately and go quickly to the emergency room! Your child can get in trouble if you wait too long.

Your role in your child's asthma care:

If your child has not been diagnosed and treated, see a doctor right away. Your physician can work with you and your child to control it.
Have your child take his/her medicines as prescribed. If the doctor prescribes a bronchial inhaler, which stops asthma attacks after they've started (rescue inhaler), and can prevent expected attacks, as from exercise, ask the attending physician to give you an inhaler for school. The school nurse will keep it in the clinic, and have it on hand whenever the child needs it.