Family Magazine

Asthma in Children – What is Asthma, Causes, Prevention, Diagnosis and Treatment

By Upliftingfam @upliftingfam

Young Child with AsthmaI remember my oldest son had a lot of problems when he was a baby with frequent upper respiratory infections, wheezing, difficulty breathing, and asthma.  I never found out what triggered his asthma problems but I am assuming it is because he has sensitivity to environmental allergens.   In fact, now he only has to use an inhaler when he exercises outdoors,  typically, during the fall and spring when allergens are higher.  If you think that your child has asthma symptoms or has difficulty breathing, it is important to see the doctor or take your child to the emergency room.  Jessy from DomeHealth, wanted to share with you some basic information about asthma and how to treat it.

Disclosure:  This post is for information purposes only.  If your child is having difficulty breathing, has a chronic cough, or is wheezing, take your child to see his or her doctor or go to the nearest emergency room.

Asthma is a respiratory disease that is very common, especially among children. It rarely develops before the age of two years.

What is asthma?

Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease of the airways. Under the influence of an irritant or an allergen , bronchi will ignite by an irritation and will produce more mucus , resulting in the reduction of the space for the passage of air.

This is a disease that currently affects over 3.5 million people, representing 6% of the adult population and 10% of children. Although this disease is widespread, especially among the younger population, it rarely affects babies.

The majority of people who will develop asthma will show the first identifiable symptoms at the age of 5 years and it is very rare that a child develops them before the age of 2 years. Many toddlers have congested airways, but this is not due to this disease.

Asthma Causes

Environmental Factors

It have to be noted that the number of people with asthma is increasing, especially in large cities. Pollution, sedentary lifestyle and the contact with allergens may favor its development. In addition, our living environment and mainly our homes are becoming more protected and so sterile, that we are  unknowingly making our health more fragile than it should be and have been in the past.  Some asthma specialists have even gone so far as to declare asthma as a disease of civilization!

Hereditary Factors

The likelihood of developing asthma increases if another family member is or was affected. Children who have a parent with asthma are  3-6 times more likely to have asthma and children whose both parents are suffering  from asthma are 10 times more likely to develop this same condition.

Breast Milk Strengthens Your Baby’s Immune System

We must remember that baby’s and toddlers that are breastfed develop better immunity and have less risk of developing allergies, than the bottle-fed babies. This is explained by the fact that the immune system of the mother have concentrated it’s healing and allergen fighting strength in the breast milk and that way it helps protect the baby against many of the possible infections that are in our environment.

Asthma Suffers Should Avoid Triggers as Much as Possible

Smoking

Smoking as well as passive smoking during pregnancy or during lactation significantly increases the risk of hypersensitivity reactions in your child. In addition, if your family has a case of allergies, it is best to avoid pets and dust in the environment of the baby.

Allergens

However, allergens are very diverse and can originate from the food, the cow’s milk proteins are, for example, a common allergen. As for irritants, they are also extremely numerous. A Belgian study showed that carrying your baby to the pool increases the risk of developing asthma due to the chlorine that is used as an disinfectant.

With time, you will likely learn to recognize, avoid and protect your child from most of the irritation and allergic factors.

How is Asthma Diagnosed?

Young Child Using AeroChamber for Asthma InhalerAsthma Can Be Difficult to Diagnose

Asthma is similar in its symptoms, with other respiratory diseases, but thanks to its chronic nature, it’s possible  to be differentiated from them. This is why, in some cases, it is difficult to be detected in infants: it can often be mistaken for another condition. Later, when symptoms persist and the chronic nature is proved, the diagnosis can be better confirmed.

Asthma in infants is often associated with allergy and may be accompanied by eczema. During its first two years, a baby may suffer from these small red spots which are then replaced with asthma.

How is Asthma in Children Treated?

Two Types of Prescription Drugs Are Used to Treat Asthma:

There are drugs that act as  emergency treatment during an asthma attack.

Bronchodilators, which increase the diameter of the bronchus, to allow the passage of air.

Other drugs act as DMARDs, which have anti-inflammatory action, to reduce lung inflammation.

These medicines have no side effects on the healthy development of your child.

 Administration of Asthma Medication is Different for Babies or Toddlers

Inhalers are difficult to use, so often the nebulizer have to be used. The first device(Inhalers) has a mask that is applied to the child’s face and the other device(nebulizer) vaporizes the drug.

There is also a less bulky device, that is the asthma spacer: when the active substance is expelled, it gets stuck in a special chamber of the device until the child sucks. This solves the problem of coordination between the expulsion of the drug and its inhalation.

Syrups or tablets that have the same properties as the inhalable drugs exist. But be aware that these methods are not appropriate in emergency treatment, because they take too long to act.

Other Asthma Treatment Options

Physical therapy can also help your baby by reducing bronchial congestion.

Desensitization immunization to allergens also gives good results.

 Always Trust Your Child’s Doctor

If your child is have asthma, it is important to choose your doctor carefully, because asthma is a chronic disease, and you may need to visit him regularly.

A trust relationship must be established with him so that you are able to testify and talk without embarrassment about small details on the lifestyle of your child and family. Each person reacts to asthma differently and because the particularity of the disease of your baby is even more elusive,  as it is not yet able to express in words what it feels. So it’s a real team work between the doctor, who knows well the disease and the parents, who know the child, which will lead to better results.

More importantly, you must follow its requirements strictly. If you observe an improvement in the symptoms of the disease, that doesn’t mean it is cured. Indeed, asthma never really heals, it may mitigate, but if you stop the treatment, you may cause further complications. If you see improvement in your child’s condition, see your doctor who can, if it’s necessary adjust its prescription accordingly.

 Asthma is Rare in Babies But It is Possible for A Baby To Have Asthma

Asthma is very rare in babies. Feed your baby with breast milk and avoid contact with cigarette smoke. These are the best ways to prevent the occurrence of asthma, though it is not infallible measure and don’t guarantee 100% prevention.

If, unfortunately, your baby turns out with asthma, effective treatments exist,  provided you are rigorous in their monitoring. Include a playful form of decision into your daily routine and educate  your child about its condition. It will grow just as well or maybe even better than the others.

Guest Post Author’s bio:

Jessie DonstonJessy Donston is a software engineering student, a SEO expert and healthy life enthusiast, which is passionate about educating himself and others on everything and mostly on health. He is always searching and collecting every available information about health, nutrition, diets, fitness, healthy lifestyle and healthy food. Jessy also have very deep interest in science and technology researches and enjoys his role as the administrator and editor of his blog (you would maybe call him a geek and he wouldn’t mind much :)). You may see him sometimes jogging, biking or doing some other sport in his home town Newport, England. As a dedicated and inspired blogger he is constantly trying to help everybody that may need any kind of help and that is actually the reason why he started his blogging adventure with his blog at: www.domehealth.com.

Image Credits

Young Child With Asthma –  Image source: family1chiro.com

Young Child Using AeroChamber for Asthma Inhaler - Image source: family1chiro.com

Did your child suffer from asthma as a baby?



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