Changing seasons, parents prepare for allergies and asthma

With the season changing, allergies might be an asthma trigger!

NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- Fall officially starts September 21, which brings falling leaves, sweaters, and allergies.

Children's Hospital of the King's Daughters says allergies can cause flare-ups in asthma, but allergies aren't the only trigger.

Pediatric Allergist and Immunologist, Dr. Lauren Smith, of CHKD talked with 13News Now about asthma management.

What causes asthma symptoms to worsen or flare-up?

  • Triggers: Triggers are substances or situations that start an asthma episode. Your child may have more than one trigger, so identifying and avoiding these are very important in asthma management.
  • Examples of triggers: Allergies (dust, pollen, pets), Irritants (smoke, perfume, cleaning odors), Weather changes (hot to cold, wet to dry), Infections (cold or virus), Exercise, Stress and emotion
  • With proper management, a child with asthma can fully participate in most sports, but remember to give your child asthma medicine before exercising, as recommended by his or her healthcare provider. Aerobic exercise actually improves airway function by strengthening breathing muscles.

How should asthma be dealt with at school?

  • It is important to work with your child’s healthcare provider and school staff to meet your child’s asthma plan goals. Some children may need to take their medicines during school hours, so be sure to understand laws about carrying a rescue inhaler and ensure your child knows when and how to use it
  • The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology recommends meeting with school staff to inform of condition, management plan, and how to help during an asthma flare-up. Physical activity coaches and supervisors should also be made aware of a child’s asthma condition and inhaler use.

What are some helpful tips for managing asthma?

  • Be sure to consult your child’s health care provider about use of daily medicines.
  • Give your child their controller medicine every day to keep asthma under control and always use a spacer with inhaler or mouthpiece/mask with nebulizer
  • Avoid asthma triggers
  • Give your child their reliever medicine when you start to see early warning signs or other asthma symptoms as directed by your child’s doctor.
  • Develop an action plan with your child and his or her supervisors should an asthma episode occur

For more information about asthma and how CHKD can help, click HERE.

© 2017 WVEC-TV


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