Understanding a Family Member or Child Who Has Asthma

If you’ve ever had asthma yourself or had to care for a child who has asthma, then you’ll know what I mean when I say that it’s no joke. Although the intensity of the asthma attack can vary depending on the individual, it’s still not something to be taken lightly.

Coming from a family of asthma prone people and being knocked down by periodic attacks myself, does make me understand others who may be suffering the same thing. I can understand them just a bit more than I otherwise would.

The word asthma comes from a Greek word that means panting–in truth; this is what literally happens during an asthma attack. To summarize the basics of asthma, I’ll start by saying that it’s caused by inflammation in the airways. When a person has asthma, this is called an asthma attack.

child who has asthma

During an asthma attack the muscles that surround the airways become tight and the lining of the air passages in the body swells, thus reducing the amount of air that can pass by.

Asthma symptoms do vary from person to person, but they are usually things like wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath, or chest tightness. Most people tend to think that just because the symptoms sometimes are less in one person than the other, perhaps the first does not have it at all. But asthma symptoms vary from person to person.

Depending on the sensitivity of the individual the symptoms of asthma can be triggered by something as small as dust or even just having a pet around. Breathing in allergy-causing substances is usually the key factor in triggering an attack.

The general triggers for asthma attacks are tobacco smoke, strong emotions, stress, pollen, meld and mildew, chemicals in the air or food, changes in the weather, dust, animals (especially those who have long fur and carry dust). Even something as simple as a common cold can trigger an asthma attack.

I’ve found that when it comes to protecting yourself or a loved one from asthma attacks, it’s the little things that really make a big difference. Keeping dust out of the way is the first big must. Try your best to keep your house clutter free so that there is less stuff for dust to settle on.

When it comes to bedding, change the sheets and pillowcases often enough so that dust doesn’t have time to collect on it and disturb breathing while sleeping. I would even suggest that you place a type of extra sheet over the mattress before putting the main bed sheet. Doing this will reduce exposure to dust mites and any musty smells.

When cleaning the floors and cupboards, only use detergents and cleaning materials that are unscented. I would suggest also that if the person is not able to cope with animals being close by, that the pet in question either be moved to the other side of the home, or given to the next door neighbours or other relatives who are welcoming of the idea.

Family members who smoke should make a conscience effort not to do so in front of others because the smoke can trigger an attack of asthma symptoms through irritating the airways. Also, if possible don’t live in areas of town where you know there is a lot of air pollution, industrial dust, and other irritating fumes. All these bring on asthma attacks more frequently.

Children who have asthma problems tend to get cranky easily, especially during the times that they are hit by an asthma phase. In these cases, do all that you can to be patient with the child, and assist him through it. The effects of asthma affect people in different ways some folks may have long-term shortness of breath and other more short-term.

Sneezing and coughing can also be seen as symptoms. Attacks can last for a couple minutes or even a couple days. People who have asthma attacks also have symptom-free periods, but still, it’s best to keep in check with the individual’s surroundings and how they are responding to them.

Keep a Ventolin Inhaler handy in your first aid kit at all times so that you are ready should a child or other member of the family have an instant asthma attack with not enough time to get them to the clinic you can have a solution rather than panic.

Ventolin Inhalers contain an active ingredient of salbutamolwhich works very quickly to relieve asthma attacks, wheezing, chest tightness or shortness of breath. When you use salbutamol through an inhaler device this allows the medicine to act directly in the lungs where the body needs it most.

Roger is an Asthma patient and likes to give people advice about how to take care of yourself. He writes for blinds.com and advises proper interior design for asthma sufferers.

Photo Credit By: huffingtonpost.com


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