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  • Managing Asthma

  • Asthma is a disease of the lungs. When something in the air bothers your airways, the space through which air moves in and out of your lungs gets smaller. This makes it harder to breathe.

    Some signs of Asthma are:

    • Coughing a lot, even at night
    • Difficulty breathing after physical activity
    • Difficulty breathing during a certain time of the year
    • Chest tightness or wheezing

    The things that lead to an asthma attack are called triggers. Different people react to different things. Learn what your child’s common asthma triggers are.

    They can include:

    • Perfumes, chemical fumes, vapors, gases
    • Dust, molds, tree pollen
    • Weather extremes (too hot, too cold, too humid) or changes in the weather
    • Second-hand cigarette smoke
    • Dust mites, cockroaches
    • Some foods or additives

    You can help control your child’s asthma:

    • Give your child medicine exactly as your healthcare provider tells you to. Not everyone takes the same kinds of medicine. Some medicines are inhaled, or breathed in, and some are swallowed, like syrups or pills.
    • Think ahead and avoid things that can cause your child to have an attack.

    When you control your child’s asthma, they:

    • Won’t struggle to breathe
    • Will sleep better
    • Won’t miss school because of an asthma attack
    • Can take part in physical activities
    • Won’t have to go to the hospital

    Work with your healthcare provider to make an asthma action plan, so you know what to do if your child has an asthma attack. The action plan covers:

    • What triggers your child’s asthma attacks
    • Recognizing the early warning signs of an asthma attack
    • What you can do to help your child feel better fast, and knowing when you should go to an emergency room.

    Share your child’s asthma action plan with school nurses, teachers, babysitters, and family members.

    To learn more, please visit:

    American Lung Association: http://www.lung.org/lung-health-and-diseases/lung-disease-lookup/asthma/asthma-education-advocacy/asthma-basics.html

    New York State Department of Health: https://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/asthma/

    Sources