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Home >  Information A-ZAll Kids Information Articles > Children and Asthma

Children and Asthma

Childhood asthma has reached all-time highs, and some experts have even went to the extreme of saying that it has reached epidemic proportions. With this being the case, it is important for parents to understand all that they can about this common childhood disease.

Once you have determined that your child has symptoms of asthma (see our signs and symptoms article), you can take your child to a pediatrician to determine if they actually have it or not. Diagnosing asthma early is very important, because the earlier you detect it, the quicker you can begin treatment on your child, which can help prevent it from getting worse.

Treatments for asthma will include such things as daily medication, an inhaler, liquid medication, or possibly a nebulizer. One of the main things that a parent must do no matter what the treatment is, is to try to rid their home of potentially harmful unknown triggers (see our article for triggers to asthma in the home). The different types of treatments are described below so that you can get a better understanding of what they are. If your child has asthma, the doctor may give your child only one, or all three. How much your child will receive will depend mainly on how bad their asthma is, what triggers it, etc:

• Daily medication—
These are given to children as a preventative medication, and are often a medication that contains steroids. Some daily preventative asthma medications are given in inhaler form, and some are chewable or liquid form. The goal of using these medications is for your child to be able to perform normal activities without asthma attacks.

• Inhalers—
These are given to children for (most of the time) during or at the onset of an attack. These help open the airways so that more air is allowed through. There are many different kinds of inhalers, and some are given to children with a mask and a spacer.

• Liquid medications—
These aren’t the same as preventative medications, and are instead the liquid form of the nebulizer medication that is much stronger than a traditional inhaler. This will help open the child's lungs so that they can breathe easier, and these are used when your child is having an attack or an episode.

• Nebulizer—
This is a portable machine that allows you to give your child a breathing treatment at home. You have to put the medication into it, and it releases a cool steam through a tube (sometimes the doctor will have you put the end in the child's mouth, but for most children, they will attach a mask) and it opens your child's lungs much more quickly than other forms of medication. This is most often used when other methods aren't working or the attack is severe.

Keeping your child's asthma under control is the main goal for parents and doctors alike. Keep triggers away from your child as much as possible and follow whatever treatment or preventative measures your child's doctor suggests. A child can live a normal, active, healthy life with asthma, as long as it is properly taken care of.

Copyright 2013. All educational materials are the sole property of Kid First Internet and are available for the benefit of our parents. Duplication or use of any material requires the express consent of Kids First Internet.

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