Living Well with Asthma
By Libby Richards, RN
April 22, 2020
Category: Child Care
Tags: asthma  

If your child has asthma, you need to work with their pediatrician to craft an asthma action plan that includes detailed early treatment instructions for his or her symptoms. This action plan shows specific steps to help keep your child’s symptoms from worsening and turning into a full-blown asthma attack.

It should likewise detail guidance on when to use medications, when to go contact your child’s pediatrician at Johnson County Pediatrics in Overland Park, KS, and when to get urgent medical help. Your child’s asthma action plan is an immensely vital tool that you should share with all your child’s caregivers, teachers, and other relevant individuals.

What Should Your Child’s Asthma Action Plan Include

  • Asthma factors or triggers that make your child’s symptoms worse.
  • Your child’s asthma zones.
  • All medicines your child uses to treat their symptoms, including their specific names.
  • Peak flow measurements or symptoms that indicate worsening of your child’s symptoms.
  • Warning signs or peak flow measurements that suggest your child needs urgent medical treatment.
  • All relevant contact numbers, including yours, your child’s pediatrician, and the local emergency room.

Your child’s peak flow rate, measure using a peak flow meter, could indicate if their asthma is worsening, even before the onset of symptoms. This can be used to identify your child’s asthma zones, which are specific states that tell how your child’s currently feeling. In general, green means that your child is symptom-free, yellow means that he’s experiencing some symptoms and need to slow down and use a rescue inhaler, while red means that he needs medical help right away.

Your child’s pediatrician in Overland Park, KS, will likewise ask you to monitor your child’s asthma symptoms to help control their condition. Symptoms that typically spell problems include the following:

  • Daytime symptoms include chest tightness, wheezing, and coughing
  • Issues with activity levels such as when playing or exercising
  • Nighttime symptoms

What You Should Know About Asthma Medications

Asthma medications include quick-relief medications and long-term control medications. Rescue or quick-relief medications help stop or alleviate asthma symptoms once they’ve appeared. These come in inhalers and work very fast to relax tight airway muscles that are making it difficult for your child to breathe. Your child can also use their quick-relief medication before any physical activity to avoid symptoms.

On the other hand, long-term control medications, also known as anti-inflammatory, maintenance, or controller medicines are used for preventing symptoms by reducing mucus production and lung inflammation. They function slowly but can help control symptoms for hours. It’s vital to note though that in order for controller medications to work, they should be taken regularly, even if your child isn’t experiencing any symptoms.

For More Information on Managing Your Child’s Asthma, We Can Help

Dial (913) 384-5500 to set your appointment with one of our pediatricians here at Johnson County Pediatrics in Overland Park, KS.