Asthma is very common problem these days and many children suffer from it. There are many times that it can be cured at a small age , yet many parents are not aware of the symptom and treatments . many children develop the early signs of Asthma before the age of 5 . Many parents simply ignore these symptoms , which in the long run is bad for the child’s health. Today we talk about Asthma in Children and the basic Asthma Symptoms and Asthma Treatments.
Asthma In Children :
As every problem needs to be understood properly to be resolved in the best way, you must know what is asthma . Asthma is more than just a problem in breathing. It is a chronic and often long-term disease . Asthma is a lung disease in which the airways in the patient’s body are inflamed or swollen . This inflammation causes the Airways to become narrower , hence affecting its efficiency to carry air into the lungs and out. Not everyone has every one of the basic symptoms and many can have just a few symptoms .
One must understand that Asthma is incurable , hence it has to be noted that proper treatment is necessary to maintain the normal life. Asthma or an Asthma attack can be caused by many things , such as a fit of cold, due to exercising, stress or even allergy.
Only a professional can help you narrow down on the type and the severity of your child’s Asthma condition. You might have seen many people having Asthma attacks , so we will discuss about them below.
What Causes Asthma ?
The reasons of asthma can vary to a great extent. Not everyone in a certain environment develop asthma and sometimes our genes can trigger this disease. To be more specific, Asthma is caused by genetics and environmental factors which varies from person to person. For children and infants it can be the reasons stated below :
- The usual cough and Cold
- Respiratory infections during cold
- pollution in the air such as dust particles in smoke.
- A Blood or close relative (Related to blood) who has suffered from Asthma can be one of the main reasons of your child being prone to Asthma.
- Allergy causing airborne particles like Mold, pollen, animal dander, dust mites etc.
- Some medicines have been found to cause Asthma attacks such as Aspirin, Ibuprofen, beta blockers and naproxen etc .
- GERD or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease may cause Asthma. In this disease the acids in one’s stomach back up into the throat and cause discomfort .
- Menstrual Cycles for some women
- Preservatives and Sulfites added to some frozen and processed food and beverages can cause asthma attacks. Commonly processed potatoes, wine, beer, shrimp and dried food have been found to cause asthma attacks.
- Physical exercise causes Asthma in many people
- Cold air may also cause Asthma
- Emotions and Stress are also reasons of Asthma
- Smoke from Tobacco
- Putting on too much weight can trigger Asthma in some children as well as adults.
- Some children and adults with allergic conditions such as Hay fever can get Asthma attacks.
What is an Asthma Attack ?
Asthma for some come as a sudden episode or attack and can be caused by various reasons.Children and adults experience an asthma attack due to varied reasons but the effects of such an attack are stated below:
- During the attack the lung muscles start to tighten. The sudden tightness of the lung muscle makes it difficult for air to pass normally as it narrows the airways.
- One is not able to breathe properly as the airways start to become narrower.
- The Inflammation increases slowly and the airways start to become narrower.
- The body starts to produce mucus in the airways and this mucus further blocks the airways and prevent airflow.
What are the Symptoms of Asthma?
There are a few symptoms of Asthma though they might not be sure symptoms . But one can be aware and take the child to a doctor to see if it is really asthma or not.
- Coughing and Cold with Breathing Trouble
- Wheezing , which is a slight hissing sound present while one breathes
- Muscles feeling tight in the chest and lung areas
- bronchitis which resurfaces very often
- Breathing Trouble
Detecting these symptoms in Children and infants can be tough as many children or adults don’t have all the symptoms on a daily basis but have severe attacks quite regularly. For infants you might see a slow feeding time or your infant may be out of breath while he/she is feeding. If your child is a toddler and does not play very much or run due to breathing problem or short breath he/she might have asthma. Cough along with becoming tired all of a sudden are more symptoms of Asthma in toddlers.
For children aged below five years may show early signs of Asthma when they have colds. If your child is coughing all day which gets more severe in the night along with prolonged fits of cold, then it is time you take them to the doctor to detect if they have Asthma. But keep in mind, wheezing, coughing and breathing trouble might be caused by Viral infections too, so it is not possible to detect it before your child is older.
A spirometry test is done, which is a breathing test to see the lung function of a child . There are other tests available to check Asthma in children which your child specialist should be aware of.
Treatment of Asthma?
Asthma is not curable, but it can be kept in check to keep your child’s life Normal and Active.
- Keep Allergens away from your child .
- Keep a check on Colds and how give medications to reduce the cough and Cold
- Avoid Packaged and Processed food if your child has attacks from preservatives
- Avoid smoking before or near the Child
- Over-Exercising or Too much activity
There are certain long-term medications, available for Asthma . These medications are generally suggested to children who have regular or severe asthma attacks.
The medicines include CorticoSteroids , which are the most used medications for Asthma. The medication is known to reduce inflammation and works well for children.
Leukotriene compounds also help in regulating Asthma along with corticosteroids but have a few known rare side effects . There are a few psychological side affects rarely seen like aggression, depression, hallucinations etc.
Theophylline is an Asthma medications, usually taken each day to help open up the airways and relax the muscles around the airways.
Inhalers: Inhalers containing CorticoSteroids and a long acting beta agonist are usually given to children to control severe or frequent Asthma attacks.
Immunotherapy : This treatment may work for children who have sever asthma attacks and whose triggers can not be controlled easily. Once the asthma triggers are pointed out through tests ,small doses of the allergens are injected into the child . Usually these injections will need to be taken once a week for the first few months and then once a month for a few years such as three to five years. With time your child’s asthma symptoms might reduce and even diminish .
There are a lot more medications and treatments but in this article you have read up the basic symptoms and treatments for Asthma. We hope this information is helpful for you and your child.