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What to do if your child has asthma.
Do children with asthma need treatment or will they grow out of it?
If you suspect your child has asthma, you should make an appointment with a pediatrician. Asthma is a chronic disease. Diagnosis and proper treatment is essential. During an asthma episode, the airways become extremely narrow due to muscle constriction, swelling of the inner lining, and mucus production. In severe exacerbations reactions, the airflow can become so compromised by the narrowed airways that death can result.
How is asthma diagnosed in children?
With young children, the pediatrician will perform a physical examination and ask about symptoms and family history to assist in making a diagnosis. With older children, the pediatrician also can perform diagnostic tests that measure how well the child's lungs are performing.
What other factors contribute to asthma?
Environmental allergens can trigger attacks and adjustments at home can diminish children's discomfort. Tobacco has been shown to contribute to asthma development in pre-schoolers. For children diagnosed with asthma, common triggers in the home include tobacco, dust mites and pet danders.
Is asthma treatment effective for children?
Children are very capable of actively participating in managing their asthma once they realize how much better they feel. Your pediatrician will work with your child and family to develop an asthma action plan that improves the child's overall health.
Dr. Parag Kumar is a board certified pediatrician at Sanford Clinic. He completed a medical degree at Armed Forces Medical College, Pune, India, and a residency in pediatrics at Children's Hospital at St. Joseph's, in Paterson, N.J. He has specialized training treating pediatric obesity, asthma, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and other behavioral and mental health issues. A fellow in the American Academy of Pediatrics, Dr. Kumar also is a clinical professor for the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences Department of Pediatrics.