Paediatric Asthma Treatment In London
Childhood asthma is a respiratory disease that affects around 1 million children in the UK. Asthma is the most common long-term condition among children and adolescents. Several triggers can cause this condition to develop from a young age, with most of them being difficult to avoid in everyday life.
How Is Asthma In Children Diagnosed By A Paediatric Consultant?
We understand that asthma can be challenging to detect in children, particularly under the age of 5 years. This is because they often cough or wheeze, which does not necessarily mean they have asthma. However, if you are concerned about persistent coughing or wheezing, you should consult your child’s paediatrician or GP.
You can also aid in your child’s diagnosis by keeping a diary and taking a video of their breathing to show the doctor. Note down when your child’s asthma gets worse to help with identifying potential triggers. Expect your paediatric consultant to ask a few questions regarding your child’s symptoms and family history. Some additional tests may be required to help your consultant come to a confident diagnosis.
Two lab tests may be required, a test for exhaled nitric oxide test and a spirometry test. The exhaled nitric oxide test measures allergic inflammation in your child’s lungs. Spirometry is a machine your child will blow into to identify how much air the lungs hold and whether they have any obstruction to breathing. Our team will decide which tests are appropriate to help them diagnose the condition.
Paediatric Asthma Treatment
The main aim of asthma treatments is to keep symptoms under control – while preventing the likelihood of an attack. The type and quantity of medication needed to stop attacks can vary.
Reliever Treatment For Asthma In Children
Medication, called short-acting bronchodilators such as Ventolin or Salbutamol, provides immediate relief from asthma symptoms within a few hours. They should always be given through an inhaler. They work by relaxing the muscles around the airways so that they open up temporarily. This treatment is typically for those who suffer from very mild cases of asthma. Most children should take a preventer inhaler too.
Preventer Treatment For Asthma In Children
Preventative treatment for asthma is the most important treatment in all children with asthma and should be taken daily. Inhaled corticosteroids are the mainstay of preventer treatment for asthma and they work by reducing excess mucous production in the lungs. Other preventer medications can also help, such as long-acting beta-agonists in combination with steroids, leukotriene modifiers, cromolyn, and in severe attacks, oral corticosteroids.
Managing Your Child’s Asthma
Once you learn how to manage your child’s asthma, you can significantly reduce their chances of a flare-up in the future. We understand this can be challenging, so we have compiled a list of asthma management tips below to help you get started:
- Ensure your child is flu vaccinated. This can prevent their risk of an attack if they get the flu.
- Keep a record of their asthma attacks. This will help you identify their triggers and need for more medication. You can then actively work towards avoiding them in the future.
- Give your child their preventer medication daily through a spacer – with the guidance of your paediatric consultant.
- Follow your child’s personalised asthma action plan.
- Ensure your child’s asthma is reviewed annually
Potential Asthma Complications
Asthma symptoms can interfere with play, sports, or other activities. Other potential complications include poor sleep and fatigue.
Asthma attacks can be life-threatening so it is important to get a proper diagnosis of asthma, and management. Severe asthma can cause a permanent decline in lung function so it is important to manage this well. If you suspect your child has asthma, you should seek advice from a paediatric consultant. Children’s Allergy Doctors can help. We offer various services, such as asthma management, to help parents better understand and manage their child’s condition. Don’t hesitate to book an appointment today to find out how our support team can help you.
What parents say:
“As a family, we feel incredibly grateful our child is under the care of Dr Brough. Dr Brough’s commitment to excellence, her breadth and depth of knowledge, the respect with which she treats patients and families, her humanity and kindness are much evident. Her approach to our daughter and her symptoms was intelligent, thorough and sensitive. The excellent and immediate care – appropriate referrals, attention to detail and follow-up is exemplary, and, in my experience, unparalleled. Dr Brough’s support staff – both admin and nursing – are also to be commended for their outstanding communication, efficiency and kindness.”