Integrated Family Community Services 3370 South Irving Street, Englewood, CO 80110-1816 Ph: 303-789-0501

What You Need to Pay Attention to Now you Know Your Child has Asthma

An asthma diagnosis isn’t what any parent wants for their child, but modern medicine has come a long way in terms of treating the condition, and making life easier for those who suffer from it. Children may not react positively at first to their new diagnosis, especially if they require an inhaler, which has cause real or perceived social issues with peers. As a parent, asthma may cause you concerns as well as you try to manage both medication and lifestyle changes. Here are some tips to help you with both aspects.

Removing Indoor Allergens
Your child’s asthma is likely to have a few triggers, possibly including indoor allergens like dust mites, pet dander, or even airborne chemicals from household cleaners or carpeting. One way to reduce these unwanted substances from the air your family breathes is to clean more frequently. For example, vacuuming with a HEPA filter-equipped vacuum cleaner can reduce most household allergens. Using dust-trapping cloths like those produced by Swiffer to dust furnishings is helpful too. You may also want to wash linens more frequently to prevent dust mites, along with using a mattress cover.

Allergy Drops
These are a relatively new concept for treating children with asthma or severe allergies. The drops are known as sublingual immunotherapy in the medical community and are an alternative to receiving traditional allergy shots, which many children can find both frightening and painful. According to MyAllergyDrops.com, the medication will reduce sensitivity to substances that trigger reactions, including asthma attacks, with the ultimate goal of eliminating serious responses that require medical intervention. The drops can be used for a variety of allergic reactions, such as mold, food, and particulates like dust or pollen. Many children respond very well to this non-invasive therapy.

Communication
Now that you know your child has asthma, you should communicate this information to family members and relatives, along with teachers and/or school counselors. This can help you and your child deal with potential emergencies and help to make sure your child always has informed adults around to help if they ever need them. It also communicates to your child that they should not be embarrassed because of their condition. This positive outlook and openness will pay dividends once they reach their adolescent years. Plus it will allow them to share their triumphs and setbacks more easily, which can help reduce illness-related anxiety.

An asthma diagnosis is not a catastrophe. In fact, with proper care, treatment, and lifestyle changes, the condition need not hold your child back and may help give them a unique perspective on the world around them.

Tim Esterdahl

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