Ways & How

how to tell if your child has asthma

how to tell if your child has asthma

Asthma occurs in children when their bronchial tubes or airways become inflamed, which usually results in heavy breathing. The general classifications of asthma are extrinsic (atopic) and intrinsic (non-atopic). Any of these two can be contracted by your child. Learning how to tell if your child has asthma may be challenging, especially if you are not aware of the basic factors to consider. According to medicinenet.com, the common risk factors that contribute to the development of childhood asthma include low birth weight, constant exposure to tobacco smoke, frequent respiratory infections, being raised in a poor environment and having a family history of asthma. Asthma affects at least 10 percent of children in the United States. Most children contract the disorder by age five. Read on below for a number of helpful tips in determining if your child is suffering from asthma.

  1. Review your child’s medical history. If your child has a respiratory infection, that is a potential indication of asthma.

    If your child previously suffered from bronchitis, pneumonia and chest colds, the risk of contracting asthma is high. Your child’s immediate environment is very significant in the development of asthma. Constant exposure to individuals who have allergies and who smoke increases the risk.

  2. Notice if your child coughs frequently. Coughing is the very basic symptom of asthma. Crying and exertion worsens coughs in children. When your child coughs in the night, it usually feels very bad. This disrupts sleep, thus, your child is likely to complain also of fatigue. You may not realize this at an early stage, but over time you will be able to recognize fatigue as a sign of asthma.

  3. Notice if your child experiences wheezing. As air attempts to pass through the constricted airways, notice that your child’s wheezes are frightening to the ears since they are high in pitch. It sounds like your kid is having a hard time breathing. Although not a strong symptom of asthma, wheezing is something you should watch for because it is usually accompanied by chest tightness.

  4. Observe your child’s breathing pattern. This is advisable for mothers who have new born babies. Since infants cannot speak, it is better to look at them closely as they breathe in and breathe out. The normal respiratory rate of newborn babies is nearly 40 times every 60 seconds, compared to adults who breathe anywhere between 12 to 20 times in every minute. Generally, babies who have trouble breathing are hard to feed as they cry rapidly.

  5. Record every symptom that occurs. When your child is subjected to medical exams, the results sometimes are inconclusive. The record that you have been making will greatly help your doctor assess the entire heath condition of your child, including the presence or absence of asthma. In your record, make sure you include the time, day, where your child was staying when a particular symptom occurred, and what your child was doing beforehand.

  6. Allow your child to undergo medical tests. Since children under five are not allowed to undergo pulmonary function tests, the doctor will heavily rely on your child’s medical history and usual symptoms. However, other tests like blood tests, x-rays and allergy exams may be ordered to help identify the existence of gastroesophageal reflux disease or a sinus infection, which usually complicates asthma.

Once it becomes certain that your child has asthma, ask for proper medication. However, no matter what type of asthma it is, the best remedy is to keep your child away from any and all forms of triggering factors. Remember, asthma is not life-threatening. In fact, it is curable, especially if diagnosed earlier. Now that you know how to tell if your child has asthma, you will no longer be  making guess work every time your child finds it difficult to breathe or has chest pain


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