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prevencion-del-asma-consejos Prevention De L'Asthme Conseils

Asthma Prevention Tips

Asthma in Children
Asthma (also called reactive airway disease) is a common problem in infants and children, Asthma Prevention Tipsaffecting about 5-10% of children (about 5 million children under the age of 18 years of age). The most common symptoms include recurring episodes of coughing, wheezing and difficulty breathing, although some children just have coughing and don't wheeze with each episode.

There is no cure for asthma, but with the right management, your Pediatrician can help to get your child's asthma under control, minimize symptoms, avoid missed days from school, and avoid visits to the emergency room or hospitalizations. With good control, your child's asthma should not limit his activities or slow him down and he should be able to participate in physical activities and sports and keep up with the other children.

Last Updated - 25th October 2005

Possible Causes of Asthma

The severity of untreated asthma can vary from having mild and infrequent symptoms to having severe daily symptoms that interfere with daily activities. Asthma can usually be classified into one of the four following steps:
Diagnosis

For children, asthma symptoms can interfere with many school and extracurricular activities. Parents may notice their child has less stamina during play than his or her peers, or they may notice the child trying to limit or avoid physical activities to prevent coughing or wheezing. More subtle signs of asthma, such as chest tightness, are often not identified as such by children. Sometimes they will complain that their "chest hurts" or that they cannot "catch their breath." Often, recurrent or constant coughing spells may be the only observable symptom.

The two most common triggers of asthma in children are colds and allergens (substances that trigger allergies). In fact, most kids with asthma are allergic and should have an allergy evaluation as part of their care. Common allergens include dust mite, animal dander, cockroach, pollen and molds. We cannot do a lot about viral illnesses but there are ways to limit allergen exposure in the home environment if you know what you need to avoid.

Asthma medications include rescue medication or quick relievers to treat symptoms (ie albuterol) and long-term controller medicines to control the inflammation that causes asthma. If a child has symptoms more than twice a week or wakes more than twice a month at night, they should be on long-term controller therapy. For more information on asthma medications, please see the Tip brochure in this series.

Techniques that will help get your child's asthma under good control, include:

An important thing to keep in mind, especially if your child has been diagnosed with asthma and is not improving with standard treatments, is that not all wheezing in children is from asthma. Other things that can cause wheezing include:
Important Reminders

Asthma Prevention

Acute attacks can be triggered by many things, including irritants (smoke or strong odors), allergens (dust mites, molds, etc.), exercise (especially in kids with exercise induced symptoms), upper respiratory infections, and changes in the weather. The best treatments are to avoid the things that trigger your child's attacks (keep a diary), follow the environmental controls described below, use any preventative treatments that have been prescribed for your child everyday, and get a flu shot each year.
Uncontrolled medical problems, including allergic rhinitis and gastroesophageal reflux can also make asthma worse, and should be treated if also present.

You may also be able to prevent asthma attacks if you can predict when your child is going to have an asthma attack and begin his medications early. You can learn to predict attacks by watching for warning signs, including a drop in peak flows, worsening allergies, runny nose, cough, exposure to a known trigger, etc.

Environmental Controls

These steps are aimed at controlling the most common allergens that can trigger an acute attack.
Asthma Treatments
Answers to commonly asked questions
Asthma at school
General Tips


Disclaimer: The Asthma Prevention Tips / Information presented and opinions expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of Tips And Treats . com and/or its partners.

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