Posts for tag: Asthma
5 Signs Your Child May Have Asthma
Does your child have asthma? Asthma is a disease that affects the lungs and is the most common disease in children. With proper asthma treatment, children can live well with this condition. Jacksonville Kids Pediatrics, which is located in Jacksonville, FL, offers treatments for childhood asthma. Dr. Alexandra Kostur is one of the top pediatricians in Jacksonville, FL. Here are 5 signs your child may have asthma.
1. Coughing- Frequent coughing is a typical symptom of childhood asthma. Coughing from asthma is often worse at night or early morning. Coughing may be your child's only symptom. Sometimes coughing brings up mucus or phlegm. Check with a pediatrician if your child's cough lingers for more than a week.
2. Shortness of Breath- Shortness of breath may be a sign that your child has asthma. During an attack, air gets trapped inside the lungs making it hard to breathe. If your child has asthma, shortness of breath is usually caused by the narrowing of the airways. If your child has a sudden, severe breathing difficulty, call your local emergency number.
3. Chest Tightness- Chest tightness is a typical symptom of childhood asthma. Children with asthma may feel like something is squeezing or sitting on their chest. Chest tightness often occurs either alone or with the other symptoms. This chest tightness may occur occasionally or frequently.
4. Wheezing- Wheezing may be a sign that your child has asthma. Wheezing is a high-pitched whistling or squeaky sound that occurs while breathing. Wheezing is caused by an obstruction in the air passages. Other conditions can also cause wheezing including allergies, respiratory tract infections, and bronchitis.
5. Sleep Problems- Sleep problems may be a sign that your child has asthma. Asthma symptoms usually become more severe during the night. Asthma can make sleep impossible and leave your child feeling tired and irritable during the day. Thankfully, when childhood asthma is treated, sleep problems tend to disappear.
Asthma can affect your child's day-to-day activities and make life frustrating and miserable. Don't wait another minute- call Jacksonville Kids Pediatrics at (904) 446-9991 today to schedule an appointment for your child in Jacksonville, FL.
Childhood asthma is more common than you might think. In fact, it is the most common chronic disorder in children, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. Asthma is a long-term respiratory condition that causes swelling within the airways, making it different for your little one to breathe. How do you know if your child might have asthma? The telltale signs include:
- Trouble or difficulty breathing
- Wheezing or whistling when breathing in
- Tightness in the chest
- Coughing that often gets worse at night
- Fatigue, especially with exercise or play
If your child is experiencing or complaining about any of these symptoms it’s important that you schedule an appointment with a pediatrician as soon as possible. It’s important to write down the exact symptoms your little one has been experiencing, particularly because their symptoms may not be present during their evaluation. If you have a family history of asthma, this is something that your child’s pediatrician will want to know.
During the evaluation your doctor will also perform a physical exam, taking time to listen to both the heart and the lungs for signs of asthma. Sometimes a test known as spirometry will be used to test the lung function (this is most common in children over the age of 6 years old). This test is used to measure how much air is in the lungs and how quickly your child can exhale. Other tests may also be performed to check for other health issues that could be exacerbating your child’s asthma symptoms such as a sinus infection.
Asthma is serious and requires medication to keep this problem under control. While there is no cure for asthma, your pediatrician’s goal for asthma treatment is to prevent the severity and frequency of asthma attacks. We want to prevent your little one from having to rush to the hospital for a severe attack. Luckily, there are medications that your children’s doctor can prescribe to lessen asthma symptoms.
The type of asthma medication your child receives will depend on several factors including age. Infants and toddlers may require inhaled steroids to control asthma symptoms. The dosage will also change depending on your child’s age. Along with long-term medications that will be taken every day to help control symptoms and keep inflammation down there are fasting-acting medications that your child will also be prescribed (e.g. albuterol), which is only used when your little one feels an attack coming on. Before any medication is given to your child, your pediatrician will talk to both you and your little one about how to use asthma medication properly.
A common condition seen in kids and teens, asthma is a lung condition that causes trouble breathing and shortness of breath. During an attack, the bronchial airways become inflamed and the muscles surrounding them constrict, making breathing difficult. Repeated attacks may cause permanent lung damage and in severe cases can be life-threatening. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, more than 23 million Americans have the condition and more than one-quarter of them are children under the age of 18.
There are a variety of triggers that can lead to an asthma flare-up or make asthma worse. These vary for every person, but common triggers include:
- Allergens, such as animal dander, pollens, mold and house dust mites
- Environmental irritants, such as cigarettes, dry air, fragrances and air pollution
- Infections, such as pneumonia, sinus infection and viral infections of the nose and throat
Does my child have asthma?
According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, asthma is the most common chronic medical problem in children. Asthma symptoms will vary in frequency and severity, and most children with asthma develop their first symptoms before the age of five. Common signs include:
- Difficulty breathing
- Tightness in chest
If you think your child may have asthma, contact your pediatrician. They can help you identify the early signs of childhood asthma and provide support for prevention and treatment.
A child may be at a greater risk for having asthma if there is a family history of asthma or if the child has eczema or frequent bouts of chronic lower respiratory problems occurring before the first birthday. Keeping your kids away from cigarette smoke in the home or car, removing pets from the house, paying attention to pollen and air quality forecasts and monitoring exercise are all ways to reduce asthma problems.
The good news is that the majority of asthma cases are only mild, and when the condition is properly managed with medications and extra caution, severe asthma flare-ups can be prevented. Work with your child’s pediatrician to learn more about the condition and ensure your child leads a healthy, normal, active life.
While there are many things you can do to prevent certain childhood illnesses like the flu, some children are simply born with other conditions, like asthma. Managing these conditions is key in helping your child feel good and live their life to the fullest. Find out more about managing and treating asthma with Dr. Alexandra Kostur at Jacksonville Kids Pediatrics in Jacksonville, FL.
What is asthma?
Asthma is a disease which makes breathing difficult by affecting the airways. Asthma causes the airways to become inflamed, narrowing them temporarily and making it difficult for the lungs to receive the oxygen they require. Known as an asthma attack, this process causes the classic symptoms of asthma: coughing, wheezing, difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, and tightness in the chest. While asthma is a manageable condition, it can turn dangerous if left untreated.
How is asthma diagnosed?
Your child’s doctor can diagnose asthma using several methods. A family and medical history can help point your pediatrician in the right direction and be aware of any other existing conditions which could affect the lungs or breathing. A physical examination allows your doctor to listen to the lungs and assess the body’s symptoms. Diagnostic testing like a lung function test or chest x-ray can also help your doctor determine if your child suffers from asthma. It is often difficult to diagnose asthma in children under the age of five. Additionally, many children simply grow out of their asthma symptoms. A younger child may have asthma if it runs in their family, they also suffer from allergies, or if they wheeze without other symptoms of a cold or infection.
Treating Pediatric Asthma in Jacksonville, FL
Pediatricians can treat childhood asthma in several ways depending on the severity of the condition, how often attacks occur, and how the condition affects the child’s daily life. Medications can be long- or short-term. They may come in the form of daily treatments or fast-acting rescue inhalers. You and your child’s pediatrician can work together to determine the best course of treatment for your child.
For more information on asthma and its treatments, please contact Dr. Alexandra Kostur at Jacksonville Kids Pediatrics in Jacksonville, FL. Call (904) 446-9991 to schedule your child’s appointment with Dr. Kostur today!