Asthma

Well as far as the asthma goes we have been luckier than most.  It seems that my son’s asthma, so far, is allergic in nature.  Meaning it will act up during pollen season and when he gets bad colds.   That doesn’t mean I have to be any less diligent.

This is another situation where I say DO NOT DROP THE BALL.  Look, I know you’re busy, and you have a lot going on in your life, but the scary thing about asthma in children, like anyone, can go from 0-60 in no time at all.  You have to be proactive when it comes to asthma, because if you’re reactive then you will find yourself in the hospital and making emergency calls to the Doctor on a regular basis.  I also tend to believe that the more Asthma events your child has the more he or she will have in the future.  It is like you are priming your child for worse and worse asthma.

So this is how it should be.  Make a plan with your doctor, discuss your concerns.  Make sure you are seeing an Asthma specialist, your pediatrician may be wonderful, and your best friend, but he doesn’t have the ability to be an expert on everything.  I have said this before, and I will say it again.  Once upon a time I had this vision of treating my child naturally for any ailment that might occur, we would have a beautiful life full of herbal remedies and homeopathic concoctions.  Well, it was a nice idea, kind of like a Utopia of medicine.  Well, just like Utopias, it does not exist.
Don’t get me wrong, I resisted at first.  But after my son had to go on oral steroids 2 times I realized I wanted to avoid that event ever occurring again.  Have you ever seen an already hyper child on steroids?  It’s not a pretty sight!  Not to mention getting that hyper child to sit still for nebulizer treatments every 3-4 hours.  And the first time, it was so bad I had to wake up every 3-4 hours and hold the nebulizer in front of his mouth while he slept.  That was lots of fun.
But I digress.  Now we have a plan.  Based on the knowledge that his Asthma tends to be illness or allergy related.  During pollen season we use a steroid inhaler daily and during cold season, when he begins to develop a cold we start the steroid inhaler immediately until the cold has run it’s course.  Since implementing this simple plan we have had no asthma events.  Now I am not saying that if you do this your child’s asthma will be under control, but I see an awful lot of kids who I believe are over-medicated because their parents cannot take the time to pay attention to the signs and treat their child proactively.    And it might already be too late, your child might be in a situation where he needs to be on a steroid inhaler daily now.  That is definitely a possibility, so to you I say, don’t shirk your duties, keep your child on top of his meds.  And pay attention!  I listen to my son’s chest whenever I even suspect a teeny wheeze, or I recognize the potential for a wheeze.

I have also met parents who have medications from their pediatrician and allergy doctor, and because they are not consistent about what doctor they call they are constantly switching meds on their child.  Do the research folks.  Get on the internet, google what medications your child is on.  Educate yourself on the side effects, and interactions.  Do not rely on other people to keep your child safe, that is your job.  I have a friend who’s son was suffering from severe allergies this past spring, she called her pediatrician and he prescribed something over the phone.  First of all, what if she just thought he had allergies but he really had pneumonia or the flu?  I know it’s convenient to get medications over the phone, but when you are complaining about something new the doctor should see your child!  You should insist on it.
This doctor wound up prescribing a medication that is specifically for allergic asthma, this child does not have asthma!  He was just very congested, so much so that he was having trouble sleeping.  He probably didn’t even need a prescription, I am sure an over the counter like Zyrtec would have been fine.  (I actually know that Zyrtec did wind up being just fine)  So this doctor, over the phone, never examining the child, put the child on a medication that was not only inappropriate, but it also has a laundry list of  side effects that I think most parents would want to avoid if at all possible.  These parents trusted their doctor and never even questioned the medication, or the necessity for it.
I did the research for them simply because I had seen the commercials and remember it having such a long list of side effects even on the commercial.

2 comments on “Asthma”

  1. I have had exercise-induced asmtha since junior high, and have been running since then, too. If I do a slow warm up of about 10 min. or so, it makes the rest of the run much better. One of the hardest things I had to learn was when to keep my mind-over-body mentality, and when to realize it was time to slow down or stop. It’s hard to make yourself take a break, especially when you are determined and working toward a goal. However, it’s a lot better than being alone miles from home and not being able to breathe. I had to change my goals to work with my asmtha. I went from faster 5K training to slower endurance training for marathons and half-marathons. It helped me to enjoy running again, instead of always fighting the disappointment and frustration that comes from an attack interrupting your running goals.Good luck- I hope you find something that works for you!

  2. As someone with severe asthma (irritated by cat allergies), I say THANK YOU for this. Asthma is a serious condition and living with asthma symptoms unchecked can be quite uncomfortable. Good for you for doing the research and advocating for your son’s health.

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