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Caring For Your Child With Asthma During The COVID-19 Pandemic

Author: Tracy Nash, RN

During these challenging times parents may have extra concerns if their child has asthma. The good news is that children with asthma are no more likely to get Covid-19 than their peers and children who do get the corona-virus tend to have mild symptoms similar to the common cold.

But what if my child has asthma?

Not many children have been found to have the coronavirus so it is still hard to predict how the coronavirus may affect a child with asthma. But asthma and Covid-19 both affect the lungs and so a child may develop more severe symptoms if they have asthma. That is why it is so important to ensure that your child’s asthma is well controlled.

Make sure your child takes their preventer inhalers every day as prescribed.

Any respiratory virus or seasonal allergy may be a trigger for your child’s asthma but is it the common cold, the flu, seasonal allergies or is it Covid-19. Many of the symptoms are similar between the respiratory illnesses. The following chart can help you work out if it is an allergy a respiratory illness or possibly Covid-19.

If your child has a fever and a cough call your doctor.

Returning to School

This year it may be even more important that your child is prepared for returning to school. Each school will have different policies in place for social distancing and hand washing, prepare your child for different routines by explaining these new protocols.

Every year, about two to three weeks after school students return to school, there is a spike in asthma attacks or flare ups. This results in a dramatic increase in children suffering from increased asthma symptoms (cough, wheeze, shortness of breath) often requiring visits to emergency room or hospital admissions.

Children returning to school face increased exposure to viral infections (colds) and allergens such as mould or dust-mites found in the classroom.

Develop a good routine so that your child takes their preventer inhalers daily as prescribed.

If your child is using their relief inhalers (usually blue) more than twice a week and experiencing asthma symptoms, coughing, wheezing, waking at night or feeling out of breath contact your doctor for an urgent visit.

What can you do to lessen the risks for your child with asthma?

Returning to school is an exciting time. Let’s be prepared and reduce the chances of an asthma attack.

Tracy Nash, R.N., is the Director of Asthma Education at Open Airways. If you would like to talk to an asthma nurse.