Monthly Asthma Tips
Below are monthly asthma tips:
Brr it is cold outside! Cold air can be a trigger for some children with asthma. If you plan to play in the snow or go outside when it is cold – ask your doctor if your child should take the rescue inhaler 15 minutes before you go outside. This can prevent an asthma attack. It also helps to wear a scarf over your mouth also so you are breathing in warm air into your lungs. Have fun building a snowman!
If you ever notice mold in your home or at school – let someone mold. Mold is bad for everyone & triggers asthma attacks. Be aware that emotions & stress can trigger an asthmatic reaction. If this happens after crying, laughing hard or yelling, make sure to take your rescue inhaler that your doctor prescribed.
It is nice outside to go run &play! If running or exercise causes coughing, chest pain/tightness, or wheezing – you may have exercise-induced asthma. If this occurs, you need to slowly warm up from a jog before you run & ask your doctor about taking your rescue inhaler, such as Albuterol, 15 minutes prior to running. We want you to play sports and have fun playing!!
Everything blooms in the spring! If you have allergies, this can trigger an asthma attack! It is best to see a pulmonologist or a physician for an allergy skin or blood test to find out if you are allergic to things outside, food, or animals so you know your asthma triggers. Trees, grass & ragweed are common allergy triggers. To control dust mites- wash your sheets, blankets, pillows, and stuffed toys once a week in hot water & vacuum carpet. You can also purchase special dust proof covers for your mattress & pillows & air filters for the bedroom.
School’s out for summer! Make sure when you travel, to bring all your asthma medications and asthma devices: spacer & peak flow meter & breathing machine with you to be safe on the airplane or in the car. Always have your rescue inhaler and spacer in a zip lock bag with easy access in case you need it.
Time to hop in the pool & play with your pets! If you have asthma, make sure no pets are allowed in your bedroom, ever! Just keep your bedroom shut & play with them in other areas of your house or outside. You want to keep your room pet-free so they are never allowed to sleep in your bed. Pets have dander & they bring in pollen, dust, & grass from outside in your room which may also trigger your asthma to flare up.
Getting ready for Back to School! Make sure to make a physical with your primary care doctor or pulmonologist before school so you can be asthma prepared! Check your inhalers to see if they are almost empty or expired to ask for refills for both home & for the school nurse. Make sure you have two spacers, one for home and one for school. Some children with asthma need to be on daily controller medications during the fall & winter to prevent a hospitalization due to a cold or virus.
The school bell is ringing! Make sure your school nurse/aide has your rescue medicine for example Albuterol or Xopenex inhaler and a spacer so you can take your medicine any time you need it or if you have an asthma attack at school. Give a copy of your asthma action plan to your school nurse, teacher, and coach. Make sure all teachers you have know you have asthma so they can help you be safe.
Flu Season is coming soon! Make sure you get your inactivated flu shot ASAP! Children with asthma should NEVER receive the nasal flu mist, only the shot.
Trick or Treat – Food allergy triggers can occur with this candy-filled holiday such as chocolate candy filled with nuts if you have a nut allergy. Your best bet? Consider taking your child to an allergist for allergy testing if they have asthma to find out what allergies they may have. For Halloween night, have some non-candy treats for your child such as stickers, pencils and small toys to swap for sweets they cannot eat.
Costumes – Watch out for nickel in costume accessories, from a pirate sword to tiaras and magic wands. Nickel is one of the most common causes of allergic contact dermatitis, which can make skin itchy and spoil trick-or-treating fun.
Haunted hand-me-downs – Halloween costumes packed away in a box for months can be filled with dust mites, which can trigger asthma attack and allergies. Wash the hand-me-down costumes in hot water or consider visiting the store for a new costume to prevent wheezing & sneezing.
Menacing makeup – Cheap Halloween makeup may include preservatives that can cause an allergic reactions. Instead, you can purchase theater makeup. Because it can take a few days for a rash, swelling or other reaction to appear, test the makeup on a small area of skin well in advance of Halloween.
Frightening fog – If you’re considering renting a fog machine to make your house extra spooky, please think again. Fog can trigger asthma in some children when inhaled.
Perilous pumpkins –Keep in mind that pumpkin patches are often moldy and dusty-which are allergies and asthma triggers for some. Consider buying a pumpkin from a grocery or discount store.
Cold chilly air- Cold air can be a trigger for some children with asthma. Talk to your physician to see if you should inhale your rescue medicine prior to going outside in the cold air to make sure your trick or treating experience is fun.
Time for sweaters & scarf’s! Cold chilly air can be a trigger for some children with asthma. Talk to your physician to see if you should inhale your rescue medicine 15 minutes prior to going outside in the cold air to prevent an asthma flare-up. We want to make sure you can also participate in fun fall activities outside.
Christmas trees usually have leftover mold on them or pollen. Some children with asthma have an increased difficulty breathing when you bring a live tree in the house- artificial trees would be your best solution! If you have an artificial tree & ornaments stored away, make sure you rinse or wipe off with a wet cloth all items off to remove dust prior to decorating the tree. Dust is a asthma trigger.
Smoke from fireplaces, open fire, & second hand smoke from family members you smoke cigarettes, pipes or cigars can trigger an asthma attack. Make sure no one smokes around your child & they smoke outside only away from the house. If they smell like smoke, they need to shower & change their clothing due to the chemicals on skin an