How To Prevent Asthma Flare Ups This Fall?

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According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, “asthma is characterized by inflammation of the air passages resulting in the temporary narrowing of the airways that transport air from the nose and mouth to the lungs. Asthma symptoms can be caused  by allergens or irritants that are inhaled into the lungs, resulting in inflamed, clogged and constricted airways. Symptoms include difficulty breathing, wheezing, coughing tightness in the chest. In severe cases, asthma can be deadly.”

Asthma is also very common among children—in fact, most people suffering from asthma are younger people. Children with asthma have a greater risk for experiencing flare ups most especially during the fall season because of the airborne molecules and mold spores. Seasonal infections are also contributive to this fact, i.e. flu, cough and colds, etc.

These flare ups are marked by common hallmark symptoms of asthma like inflammation of the airways, swelling and tightening. These symptoms result to wheezing, coughing, and difficulty of breathing. Fortunately however, it is also possible to have these risks slashed off, said researchers and experts from the Johns Hopkin’s Children’s Center.

“Year after year, we see a predictable spike in patient visits for asthma exacerbations in fall and winter, but many of these visits could be easily avoided with simple prevention,” shared Dr. Robert Wood, the director of allergy & immunology at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center.

In the United States alone, nearly 6.3 million children have asthma, which makes it the most common chronic illness among children. Hopkins experts, on the other hand, explain that there are three key steps in preventing asthma flare ups among children, especially this fall season:

-         Getting a Flu Shot. Number thing to remember is that flu and other acute upper and lower respiratory tract infections can lead to serious health hazards among children, most especially to those with asthma and other chronic conditions. Flu vaccine is important in preventing these infections and in minimizing the complications brought about the different strains of flu virus.

-         Avoid Asthma Triggers. Asthma triggers can be found anywhere… even in the comfort of our own homes. The best way to prevent flare ups is through getting rid of these triggers. Desensitizing your home is very important in preventing asthma attacks and other chronic airway conditions, too. Other allergens include insects and bugs, industrial smog, household chemicals, dust and others.

-         Make use of Controllers Regularly. Asthma puffs and inhalers are important. Doctors prescribe them not be stashed inside the medicine cabinet. Children who experience asthma signs and symptoms two or more times each week get benefit from regularly using these controller medications. These medications limits airway inflammation and lessens flare-ups.

“Over the summer, many patients have fewer asthma symptoms and cut down on their controller meds, but for most kids, symptoms will return with the change of season, so reverting to their regular drug regimens is critical,” noted Dr. Elizabeth Matsui, a renowned pediatric allergist and immunologist at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center.




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