If we have diagnosed your child with asthma, you may have a lot questions, and the best thing you can do is to arm yourself with knowledge. At Carolina Kids Pediatrics in Raleigh, we want you to know how to best care for your child with asthma.
As a parent of a child with asthma, you already know what it looks like when they have an asthma attack: shortness of breath, wheezing, coughing. It is also possible for asthma to be less dramatic – a nagging, tight cough that may appear when your child is on the soccer field, or wakes them up at night. But have you been able to figure out what triggers your child's asthma attacks? Here are some common triggers:
Colds and respiratory infections
Tree or flower pollens
Air pollution such as cigarette smoke, smog, or paint fumes
You may already know what triggers your child's asthma. If you don't know, it's important to try to find out. Once you know your child's triggers, then you can work to avoid them. We can help you figure out the pattern or, when needed, allergy test your child to pin down his/her asthma triggers.
Your child may be placed on long term daily preventative medication to manage asthma symptoms. The most common asthma preventative medications are inhaled steroids. Although many parents worry about side effects, inhaled steroids aren’t really absorbed into the body and don’t cause significant steroid side effects. They do control airway inflammation that triggers asthma symptoms, and may even improve your child’s long-term lung function. Your child will also be prescribed albuterol, an inhaler to use for quick relief when asthma symptoms flare-up.
A good rule of thumb for determining if your child’s asthma is under good control is the “Rule of 2s.” If your child has asthma symptoms (such as cough or wheezing) requiring albuterol more than twice weekly during the day, more than twice monthly at night, or has more than two significant asthma attacks requiring oral medications in a year, their asthma is under poor control. If this is the case, it’s time to better control asthma triggers or increase preventative asthma medications.
Asthma Action Plan
When your child is diagnosed with asthma, we will review an Asthma Action Plan with you. This plan should identify your child's triggers, your child's daily medication, and what you should do in the event of a flare-up. This plan should also describe when you should get emergency treatment for your child's asthma.
For any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us at (919) 881-9009. If you are looking for compassionate asthma care in Raleigh, Carolina Kids Pediatrics is the place for you!