Asthma is a respiratory condition that causes difficulty in breathing for people due to spasms in lung bronchi. The airways of the lungs become inflamed and can swell or constrict as they fill with mucus. It can affect anyone of any age, although it is usually more frequently seen among children and younger adults. Asthma can be serious if not diagnosed early and treated properly.
Pay close attention if your child starts to experience:
– Chest pain
– Overall chest congestion or tightness
– Frequent coughing
– Shortness of breath
– Wheezing or whistling sounds while breathing
– Fatigue or restlessness
– Difficulty sleeping
These are all common symptoms of childhood asthma. Take your child to your doctor or physician immediately if any of these systems persist. They may be able prescribe medications or preventative methods to help reduce the symptoms.
Unfortunately, there is no known cure for asthma. However, here are 8 ways in which you can manage your child’s asthma naturally:
- Identify anything can can lead to a flare-up. You may want to have your child take an allergy test to see what commonly found items (pet dander, mold, weeds and grasses, pollen, etc.) they may be allergic to. With this knowledge, you can help them avoid allergens that can trigger asthmatic symptoms. Although certain things like the common cold can be unavoidable, especially during holiday seasons, you can do your best to make sure your child has less chances of having an asthma attack. If your child does experience an asthma flare-up or their asthma symptoms worsen, seek medical care as soon as possible.
- Annual flu vaccinations. Having your child vaccinated for the flu virus every year reduces the chances of having their asthma flare up. It also helps them avoid potential respiratory infections. Schedule your child’s flu vaccination once a year for better chances of improving their overall health.
- Pay attention to prescriptions. Your child’s doctor will probably prescribe different short-term or long-term medications for your child’s asthma. Listen to the doctor’s instructions and follow the schedules for when and how often each medication should be taken. If a certain medicine requires the use of an inhaler or nebulizer, make sure that you know how to use them correctly. Also, read up on the possible side effects of each medication that your child is taking, and consult your doctor if your child has any adverse reactions to taking them.
- Eat healthy. Fruits like carrots, apples and squash are high in carotenoids and flavenoids that help to improve respiratory systems. Fish and fish oil supplements are also good things that can be added to your child’s diet, because they have been proven to assist in lowering asthma risks.
- Cleanliness is important. Encourage your child to wash their hands regularly, such as before every meal. Regular hand washing helps reduce the spread of viruses and germs. You can also use different types of alcohol-based hand sanitizers as part of this routine. The less your child is around germs and bacteria, the less chances they have of having an asthma flare-up or having their asthma symptoms increase.
- Add Vitamin D. Vitamin D has been proven in test results to help improve lung function over longer periods of time. It also helps your child build strong, healthy bones while they are growing. Continued use of vitamin D can also help protect them against diabetes, multiple sclerosis and different types of cancer. Ask your doctor before having your child take this vitamin, however. They may want to take a blood test to determine the best dosage levels for your child.
- Reduce stress. Asthma attacks and flare-ups can sometimes be caused by stress. Help your child learn stress reduction techniques like meditation or even a few yoga exercises or stretches. Do your best to eliminate or reduce contact with any possible stressful people or stressful situations from their lives. These techniques and others will not only help improve your child’s lung function, but also assist in helping them learn and maintain quality peace of mind in their life. This is a tactic that if done correctly can aid them in living a longer, happier life.
- Be consistent. Stick to your child’s treatment plan as closely as possible. Your child will become accustomed to it over time. Realize that there will be days where you can’t always follow the schedule exactly, but there may also be days when a flare-up will require an early dose of medicine for them. If your child is feeling fine and doesn’t exhibit any asthma symptoms, don’t stop the routine, either. Keeping a consistent treatment schedule is the best way to maintain your child’s asthma.
Talk to your doctor or health care professional before your child takes any asthma medications. Sit down and talk with your child about their asthma, and let them know that they can talk to you any time they are having problems or simply aren’t feeling well. It can take a little time, but with enough practice and dedication, managing your child’s asthma can be simple and effective.