When you're the parent of a child with asthma, managing your child's symptoms and care can be an overwhelming task even when they are with you. When seasonal triggers increase the likelihood of asthma attacks, it's tempting to try and keep them in a bubble where you can watch them at all times. But children have school, sports, and other extracurricular activities in which they participate. Instead of hiding, make a plan to keep them healthy and safe during asthma season.
Keep track of symptoms
Writing down your child's symptoms and noting what triggers them will help you manage your schedule. You may be able to notice patterns which will help you plan accordingly, whether the symptoms are brought on by weather, exercise, or food. Having a written record will also help your child's doctor make a treatment plan.
Make an appointment with your pediatrician
Routinely checking in with your child's doctor will ensure your child is receiving the best care tailored to their current needs. Medication dosage and frequency should be adjusted regularly as your child grows and their circumstances change. Make sure to clearly communicate any new symptoms with your child's pediatrician as well as any new activities in which they are participating. The doctor may want to alter their treatment plan accordingly.
Don't wait until you need a medication to fill the prescription. When your doctor writes it, take the time to go to your pharmacy and obtain the medicine. This will be far less stressful than waiting until symptoms arise. Your child should always have access to their inhaler or nebulizer for immediate relief should an asthma attack occur.
Check-in with teachers
As your child grows, you will not be their only caregiver. Daycare providers, teachers, coaches, and more will be in charge of making sure your child is safe. Make a dedicated time to speak with each adult who will be watching your child in order to review with them the basics of asthma, your child's specific symptoms and triggers, and what to do in case of an asthma attack. If possible, provide each caregiver with a written reference document to help them properly care for your child. Asthma symptoms can come on quickly, and they will need to be prepared to help your child.
Review the plan with your child
Asthma attacks can be scary for anyone, but especially for children. The more children are included in their own care and treatment, the less afraid they will be. Include your child when writing their asthma plan. Ask them to contribute by sharing what they feel their triggers are. Additionally, have them describe what it feels like during an asthma attack. Your child's input will help you make the most effective care plan.
Being a parent means worrying about your child no matter what, and when you add asthma, it is impossible to avoid. By making a plan to deal with asthma season and how it will affect your child, you can prevent any unexpected dangers. Being proactive in your child's asthma care will help calm your worry and keep your child safe.