Asthma Canada – September is here and back to school excitement prevails. I am sharing this information from Asthma Canada because I think it is so important and helpful for families dealing with Asthmatic children. With September comes the peak asthma season usually 17 days after Labour Day according to Asthma Canada. September is when thousands of school-aged children end up in hospitals and emergency rooms as a result of asthma-related issues. Hospital admissions for children with asthma rise 20%-25% in September.
Asthma exacerbations during the September Asthma Peak are associated with a rise in seasonal allergens along with the reduced compliance with asthma controller medications. Summer disrupts the routine of regular controller usage, leaving children more susceptible to asthma attacks in the fall. Summer Classrooms expose children to common asthma triggers such as dust mites, molds, and animal dander
“As children start returning to the classroom, a few simple precautions can prevent a trip to the emergency room,” said Vanessa Foran, President & CEO of Asthma Canada. “The common-sense tips that we suggest can drastically increase the likelihood of a safe and symptom-free return to school.”
Asthma Canada encourages parents of children living with asthma to develop a personalized Asthma Action Plan for their kids with their doctor. The plan is used to identify early warning signs of an asthma exacerbation and is proven to help better manage a child’s asthma.
Understand the differences in how your child’s asthma is controlled. Asthma is well controlled if there are no night-time asthma symptoms, if daytime symptoms occur less than 4 times/week. If they can exercise with no symptoms and if a reliever is needed less than 4 times/week
Asthma is getting worse if sleep is disrupted due to asthma symptoms and if there are daytime symptoms 4 or more times/week. If you cannot exercise normally and need a reliever more than 4 times/week.
It is time to get help if there is difficulty speaking due to asthma and your child is experiencing shortness of breath at rest. If their lips or nails are turning blue and their reliever does not work you need to get to the hospital.
Have a record of the medications your child is on and share the information with school officials and teachers. Help your child to understand their asthma triggers and teach them how to avoid them. Monitor the medications and make sure they are taken as prescribed and that your child knows how to use their puffer. Teach your child proper hand washing techniques and stress the importance of frequent hand-washing to avoid catching a cold.
Asthma Canada is a national organization that provides evidence-based, asthma information, education, management tools and support programs for all Canadians living with asthma. Asthma Canada continues to expand and improve its collection of educational resources for campaigns such as the September Asthma Peak. More information about Asthma Canada’s programs and services can be found atwww.asthma.ca.