Childhood Asthma: A Parent's Guide
by CMRI | Published on 30/06/2022
As a parent of an asthmatic kid, you understand how upsetting it can be to hear your child gasping or struggling to catch their breath. Childhood asthma is similar to adult lung disease. However, the symptoms may vary from those of an adult. That’s why many parents ask a lot of questions about childhood asthma from their pediatrician. Here we’ve discussed the same in brief with one of our best lung specialist doctors in Kolkata.
What are the symptoms of asthma in children?
The majority of children with asthma exhibit symptoms before the age of five. In newborns, toddlers, and preschoolers, the bronchial tubes (the passages that allow air to enter and exit the lungs) are short and narrow. Inflammation of these airways, caused by head colds, chest colds, and other ailments, can make them even smaller and narrower.
Childhood asthma symptoms can range from a persistent cough that lasts for days or weeks to abrupt and frightening breathing problems. Parents should be aware of the following warning signs:
- Coughing, particularly at night
- A wheezing or whistling sound, particularly while exhaling.
- Breathing difficulties or rapid breathing that causes the skin around the ribcage or neck to draw in tightly.
What are the causes that can trigger childhood asthma?
There are multiple reasons that can trigger childhood asthma. The following are some of them:
- Infections of the airways, pneumonia, and sinus infections
- Your youngster can be allergic to things like cockroaches, dust mites, mold, pet dander, and pollen grains.
- Air pollution, chemicals, cold air, scents, and smoke can all irritate their airways. It can cause wheezing, coughing, and tightness in the chest.
It may even cause your child to get short of breath and increase their symptoms.
Risk factors associated with childhood asthma:
The following factors may raise your child's risk of acquiring asthma:
- Tobacco smoke exposure,
- Previous allergic reactions, such as rashes, food allergies, or hay fever (allergic rhinitis),
- family history of asthma or allergies
- Being a male child
- Living in a polluted environment
- Conditions affecting the respiratory system, such as chronic runny or stuffy nose (rhinitis), swollen sinuses (sinusitis), pneumonia,
- Heartburn (gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD)
What can you do if your child has an asthma attack?
If your child is experiencing asthma symptoms:
- As per the asthma action plan, give your child their asthma reliever medication.
- If the symptoms subside, your child should be able to resume their previous activity. If symptoms persist, follow the Asthma Action Plan(suggested by the doctor) for further treatment.
- Call your care provider if your child's condition does not improve or if you are unsure of what action you should take next.
The following are the warning symptoms of an asthma attack and you should call your healthcare provider right away if you notice
- Extreme wheezing,
- Severe coughing,
- Having difficulty walking and/or talking,
- Bluish tinge on the lips or fingernails.
How do you know that your child’s asthma is well controlled?
As per our experts practicing at the best lung hospital in Kolkata, you can understand when your child’s asthma will be well controlled by keeping a track of the following:
- If he/she has an active and typical life.
- Every day he/she goes to school.
- Performs daily tasks without trouble.
- There have been no urgent visits to the doctor, emergency room, or hospital.
- And if there are fewer or no side effects from the medications.
Do not let your child’s growth be affected by asthma. If you have any queries or need a second opinion, visit our expert practicing in the best lung hospital in Kolkata and see your child's asthma symptoms fade away.