For many kids, asthma is a real issue that can have a significant impact on their life. Asthma usually starts in kids before the age of 5 – in fact, asthma is the most common chronic childhood disease. Read on to learn more about childhood asthma, as well as the signs and treatment options.
Asthma is a chronic lung disease that affects the airways that carry air in and out of the lungs. Children who have asthma experience inflammation in the airways, which can lead to coughing, wheezing and tightness in the chest. If these symptoms become severe, the child will experience what is commonly known as an asthma attack.
Asthma attacks occur when a child is triggered by something that causes an asthma flare-up. Different triggers can result in different types of asthma. For example, kids who experience allergic asthma may be triggered by allergens such as mold, dust mites, pollen, pets or waste from cockroaches and mice. Kids who experience non-allergic asthma may be triggered by certain medications, tobacco smoke, household chemicals or breathing in cold air. Kids can also experience an asthma attack from intense physical exercise — this is known as exercise-induced asthma.
There are a variety of factors that can lead to a child developing asthma. These include:
- Family history of asthma
- Having viral respiratory infections often
- Exposure to secondhand smoke in the womb or infancy
- Race or ethnicity – African Americans and Puerto Ricans are at the highest risk of asthma
- Being obese or having other allergies
When it comes to treatment, the main goal is to avoid asthma triggers and have short-term relief treatment options nearby at all times. Short-term relief medicines such as an inhaler are intended to help prevent or relieve symptoms during an asthma attack. In addition, children can be prescribed control medicines that work to reduce inflammation in the airway. These medicines are prescribed by a physician and are not necessarily suitable for every child.
If you believe your child is asthmatic, book an appointment at Midwest Express Clinic to get a proper diagnosis from our expert medical team. To find a location nearest you, visit midwestexpressclinic.com.