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HomeHealthWhat Does Asthma Look Like In Toddlers

What Does Asthma Look Like In Toddlers

Other Common Triggers Include:

What Asthma Looks and Feels Like?
  • Pollen, dust mites, cockroaches and pet dander; cat dander is worse than dog.
  • Inhaling cigarette smoke or having contact with someone who has smoked cigarettes .
  • Chemicals including household cleaners, citronella candles and bug sprays.; Colognes and scented lotions are triggers.; Pool chlorine can be a problem;; indoor pools should be avoided as the chlorine is enclosed in the building.; Private pools are much better than public, because public pools tend to have much more chlorine in them.; Beach swimming is better than pool swimming.
  • Stress: Even family stress can contribute to your child’s asthma!
  • Cold and windy weather.
  • Exercise: If your child is prescribed daily medications, make sure theyre taken prior to exercise, especially if your child is physically active.; Also, your child should have ;their inhaler on hand. ;Exercise-induced asthma may be caused by rapid movement of air into the lungs before it is warmed and humidified. This often occurs because of mouth breathing during exercise.

How Is Asthma Treated

There’s no cure for asthma, but it can be managed to prevent flare-ups. Asthma treatment involves two important things: avoiding triggers and taking medicine.

Avoiding Triggers

There are many ways to avoid triggers. After your child’s triggers are identified, the doctor will work with you to come up with a plan to avoid them.

For example, if pet dander or mold in your home trigger your child’s asthma symptoms, you can make your home asthma-safe by changing the linens often, vacuuming regularly, and keeping the family pet out of your child’s bedroom. If outdoor allergies are a problem, your child should avoid the outdoors on days when pollen counts are high.

If exercise is a trigger, the doctor may prescribe a medicine for your child to take before physical activity to prevent airways from tightening up. Doctors help people with exercise-induced asthma manage physical activity, not avoid it. Exercise can help people stay healthier overall .

Getting a yearly flu shot is also important, as illnesses like the flu can trigger asthma flare-ups.

Asthma Medicines

Most asthma medicines are breathed directly into the lungs , but some are pills or liquids. There are two types of asthma medicines:

Quick-relief medicines act fast to open up tight airways. They can be used as needed during a flare-up. Quick-relief medicines act fast, but their effect doesn’t last long. These kinds of medicines are also called “fast-acting” or “rescue” medicines.

Diagnosis Of Asthma In Children

Diagnosing asthma;in children younger than;5;years can be difficult because;children cough or wheeze;for many different reasons.;Take your child to the doctor if:;

  • the wheezing happens more than once with or without an illness;
  • constant coughing or bouts of coughing become worse at night;
  • you are concerned about any breathing problems in your child.;

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Find The Right Treatment For Your Lifestyle

Asthma treatment usually starts with using medication, like steroid inhalers and/or other prescription medications, to control daily symptoms and trigger management to reduce the number of attacks, says Dr. Parikh.

One way adult asthma treatment differs is in how much control you have over deciding when and how much treatment you need.

Childrens asthma treatment generally needs to be managed by their doctors and caregivers, but when it comes to adults, the medical community is moving toward a more patient-managed strategy, says Dr. Gerber.

You make a treatment plan with your doctor, but youre allowed to administer your own medications as needed. In general, low-dose steroids are used to control the underlying inflammation in the lungs, and bronchodilatorssometimes called rescue medicationsare used to address symptoms like shortness of breath.

After medications, treating asthma is less about what you add and more about what you remove.

Dr. Gerber recommends identifying your personal asthma triggers and adjusting your lifestyle to avoid those.

This may include staying indoors on days when pollution is high, banning fragrances in your home, buying hypoallergenic bedding, or hiring a house cleaner to take care of the dust and mold.

What Are Signs And Symptoms Of Asthma In Babies

Answering FAQs About Asthma

In infants and toddlers, it may be hard for parents, and even doctors, to recognize signs and symptoms of asthma. Bronchial tubes in infants, toddlers and preschoolers are already small and narrow, and colds and other illnesses can iname airways, making them even smaller and more irritated.

Asthma symptoms will vary from child to child. The challenge with infants is that they cannot tell you how they are feeling.

Babies with asthma may experience difficulty breathing you may notice their bellies moving more when inhaling or exhaling and the nostrils of their nose may flare out. You might also notice:

  • Wheezing or a whistling sound when breathing
  • Fast, shallow breathing
  • Blue tint to skin and fingernails

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What Are The Symptoms Of Asthma In Older Children

Symptoms of asthma in children who are 6 years of age or older can range from a nagging cough that lingers for days or weeks to sudden and scary breathing emergencies. Common symptoms include:

  • Coughing, especially at night
  • A wheezing or whistling sound, especially when breathing out
  • Trouble breathing or fast breathing that causes the skin around the ribs or neck to pull in tightly. Children with asthma may describe this like it feels like something is squeezing or sitting on their chest
  • A lack of energy or feeling weak or tired
  • Frequent colds that settle in the chest

What Causes Shortness Of Breath

The source may be minor or much more severe, says Geeta Maker-Clark, MD, a physician in integrative medicine at NorthShore University HealthSystem. It can be as minor as a viral infection and as major as a heart attack or pulmonary embolism, she says. Asthma, pneumonia, COPD, low blood pressure, and lung cancer can be other causes . More benign reasons for labored breathing may be from exercise or poor air quality.

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How Is Asthma Diagnosed In Infants And Toddlers

It is hard to diagnose asthma in infants and toddlers. Since they are not able to talk well, they cannot describe how they are feeling. A fussy baby could mean many things. Toddlers and preschoolers are often active, even with chest tightness or trouble breathing.Parents should give the following information to their childs doctor:

  • Family history of asthma or allergies
  • The childs behavior
  • Breathing symptom patterns
  • Potential triggers and responses to foods or possible allergy triggers

Lung function tests often used to make a complete asthma diagnosis are hard to do with young children. Instead, the doctor may see how the child responds to medications to improve breathing. The doctor may order blood tests, allergy testing and X-rays to get more information.Using this information, the doctor can make the best diagnosis. Parents may need to take their child to a pediatric allergist or pulmonologist for special testing or treatment.

Causes And Triggers Of Childhood Asthma

What Severe Asthma Looks Like | WebMD

Common triggers include:

  • Airway infections. This includes colds, pneumonia, and sinus infections.
  • Allergens. Your child might be allergic to things like cockroaches, dust mites, mold, pet dander, and pollen.
  • Irritants. Things like air pollution, chemicals, cold air, odors, or smoke can bother their airways.
  • Exercise. It can lead to wheezing, coughing, and a tight chest.
  • Stress. It can make your child short of breath and worsen their symptoms.

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What Does The Future Treatment Of Asthma Look Like

Approved by: Maulik P. Purohit MD, MPH

Asthma is characterized by bronchial hyper-reactivity to certain physical or chemical irritants leading to release of inflammatory cells in the airways, causing wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath, and chest tightness.

Asthma is a chronic medical condition that has been increasing worldwide and is a major cause of disability, sick days in school and workplace, increased health-care expenses, and an important cause of preventable death in children and adults.

Asthma is characterized by bronchial hyper-reactivity to certain physical or chemical irritants leading to release of inflammatory cells in the airways, causing wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath, and chest tightness.; The word Asthma is derived from the ancient Greek word aazein, which means panting or exhaling with open mouth.; Asthma has different clinical types such as allergic asthma, exercise induced asthma, cough only asthma, eosinophilic asthma, nocturnal or night-time asthma, and steroid dependent asthma.;

Asthma is highly common in children and adults with allergies and those with a family history of allergies.; The usual asthma triggers are air pollution, outdoor allergens such as grass, trees, pollen, and indoor allergens such as cats, dogs, and dust mites.; There is also a link between asthma in children due to the mother smoking during pregnancy and exposure of babies to a smoking environment.

The Future of Asthma:

What Are The Symptoms Of Asthma

Asthma causes difficulty breathing because of narrowed, mucus-filled airways. This may cause a child to have trouble breathing and/or develop a tight feeling in the chest. Other asthma symptoms include fast breathing, wheezing, coughing, or needing to use extra muscles in the neck, chest, or abdomen to bring air into the lungs.

Symptoms of asthma are not the same for everyone. Some children have symptoms nearly every day and need to take medications. Other children may only have occasional symptoms, one or two times a week. These people may only need medications when they have asthma symptoms.

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Can Babies Have Asthma

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We dont always know why a baby develops asthma but some causes can be:

  • Family history of asthma, allergies or eczema
  • Premature birth
  • A viral infection , especially when the baby is less than 6 months old
  • A mother who smokes during pregnancy

As many as 80% of children that will have asthma develop signs and symptoms before the age of 5.

Research For Your Health

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The NHLBI is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services National Institutes of Health the Nations biomedical;research;agency that makes important scientific discovery to improve health and save lives. We are committed to advancing science and translating discoveries into clinical practice to promote the prevention and treatment of heart, lung, blood, and sleep disorders, including asthma. Learn about the current and future NHLBI efforts to improve health through research and scientific discovery.

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What Are The Symptoms Of Asthma In A Child

Symptoms can occur a bit differently in each child. Children with asthma have times when they have few, if any symptoms.;They also have times when symptoms flare up. Symptoms may include:

  • Cough that is either constant or comes and goes

  • Wheezing or whistling sound that is heard while your child is breathing

  • Trouble breathing or shortness of breath while your child is active

  • Chest tightness

  • Cough at night

  • Noisy breathing

The symptoms of asthma can look like other health conditions. Have your;child see his or her healthcare provider for a diagnosis.

What Do The Two Types Have In Common

Exact causes of asthma can be difficult to pinpoint. Allergies and triggers in the environment can cause asthma symptoms and an asthma flare-up, and genetics can also play a role. But the exact reasons why people develop asthma remain unclear.

Childhood asthma and adult-onset asthma share many of the same triggers. For all people with asthma, exposure to one of the following triggers may cause an asthma attack, though different people have different triggers:

  • smoke

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Will Your Child Outgrow Asthma

Once a person’s airways become sensitive, they remain that way for life. About half of the children who have asthma have a noticeable decrease in symptoms by the time they become adolescents√Ętherefore, appearing to have “outgrown” their asthma. However, about half of these children will develop asthma symptoms again in their 30s or 40s. Unfortunately, there is no way to predict whose symptoms will decrease during adolescence and whose will return later in life.

A note from Cleveland Clinic

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 04/01/2019.


Medical History And Physical Exam

What Asthma Looks and Feels Like

Your doctor will ask about your risk factors for asthma and your symptoms. They may ask also about any known allergies. This includes how often symptoms occur, what seems to trigger your symptoms, when or where symptoms occur, and if your symptoms wake you up at night.

During the physical exam, your doctor may:

  • Listen to your breathing and look for symptoms of asthma
  • Look for allergic skin conditions, such as eczema

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What Else Should I Know

Asthma care can seem overwhelming, especially at first. But many tools are available to help you care for your child.

An asthma action plan is a care plan that you’ll develop with the doctor. The plan gives detailed instructions on how to manage asthma, including:

  • what medicines your child needs and when
  • what your child’s triggers are and how to avoid them
  • how to manage a flare-up
  • when to get emergency medical care

Following the plan;can help your child do normal everyday activities without having asthma symptoms.

Keeping an asthma diary is another way to help manage asthma. Tracking your child’s symptoms and medicines will help you know when your child is more likely to have a flare-up.

A peak-flow meter can help too. This handheld tool measures breathing ability. When peak flow readings drop, it’s a sign of narrowing airways.

You Had It As A Kid But Were Never Diagnosed

Were you chronically sick as a child? Did you quit sports when your cardiovascular fitness never seemed to improve? Did you hate gym class because it made your chest hurt?

Plenty of children with asthma fly under the radar and dont realize thats what their symptoms were until they are diagnosed as adults.

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Keep A Diary Of Your Childs Symptoms

Keep a diary of symptoms to discuss with your doctor. The diary could include:;

  • a video or audio recording of the wheezing you could use your mobile phone;
  • when the symptoms occur such as during the day or worse at night;
  • how bad the symptoms are and how often they happen;
  • how long the symptoms remain and whether they change with time;
  • whether the symptoms are worse after exercise, playing or after an infection ;
  • whether the symptoms are worse after exposure to animals, pollens or mould.;

What Can I Do To Manage My Childs Asthma

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When a baby or toddler has a chronic illness, parents can feel stressed to their limits. Here are some coping tips:

  • Learn the warning signs for increasing asthma in infants and toddlers. Know your childs particular asthma symptom pattern.
  • Develop an asthma care plan with your childs doctor. Make sure the plan has a course of action to follow if asthma symptoms get worse. Understand when your child needs emergency care.
  • Follow your child’s Asthma Action Plan every day! Dont change the plan until you consult your health care provider. Even if your childs symptoms are gone, stick with the plan until you discuss changes with the doctor.
  • Teach your toddler or preschooler to tell you when they are not feeling well.
  • Work out an emergency plan of action to follow if your child has a serious asthma episode. What hospital will you use? Who will take care of your other children? How does your medical coverage provide for emergency care?

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Things You Might Not Know About Childhood Asthma

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Asthma is one of most common chronic diseases of childhood; almost 9% of children in the United States suffer from it. And yet I find its a disease that lots of people dont understand even parents of children with asthma.

Lungs are made up of lots of little tubes that lead into bigger tubes; they look almost like sponges. In asthma, the tubes get irritated and narrowed, making it hard for air to get in and out. Lots of different things can cause that irritation, such as allergies, cold air, chemicals in the air, exercise, the common cold, or even stress.

As a pediatrician, I see children with asthma almost every day and have lots of conversations with their families. Over the years, Ive found that there are lots of misunderstandings about asthma, and those misunderstandings can cause real problems for children with asthma.

Here are three things you might not know about childhood asthma.

How Will You Know When Your Child’s Asthma Is Well

You will know that your child’s asthma is well-controlled if, while on medications, your child:

  • Lives an active, normal life.
  • Has few troublesome symptoms.
  • Performs daily activities without difficulty.
  • Has had no urgent visits to the doctor, emergency department or hospital.
  • Has few or no side effects from the medications.

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Signs And Symptoms Of Toddler Eczema

Dermatologists have a saying: If its not itchy, its not eczema. These are some of the other hallmarks of eczema in toddlers:

  • Dry, scaly, rough patches of skin that may appear red and inflamed
  • Rash, which may have small, raised bumps that bleed or ooze when scratched
  • Skin that becomes thick, dark, and leathery when excessively scratched

Eczema can occur on any part of the body, but in toddlers, its most likely to appear:

  • In the creases of the knees and elbows
  • On the wrists, hands, and ankles
  • Around the mouth and eyelids

Quick Relief For Asthma Attacks

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Even when you use long-term medication, asthma symptoms sometimes flare up. Rescue inhalers usually have drugs called short-acting beta2-agonists. They quickly relax the tightened muscles around your airways, so air can flow in and out of your lungs. This medication works for most asthma attacks, so you don’t have to go to the hospital.

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