4 year old using inhaler

My 4 year old has just been diagnosed with asthma. From a baby he has always suffered from chest infections, but until recently he has not had a asthma attack. The damp weather made him wheezy on Monday and coughing, which my doctor tells me is a asthma attack and prescribed him the blue inhaler, using 2 puff 4 times a day. After hours of persuading him to try it he has only let me use it on his face, he will only allow me to leave on for about 3 seconds after the pump is used. After two days of this use his coughing and wheezing is not getting any better, however it isn't getting any worse either. As I am totally new to asthma, and do don't yet fully understand the disease, I don't know if this method should be working or if the full 5-6 breaths is essential.

Any advice is appreciated.

2 Replies

  • Hi Arty baby,

    Your son does need to get the full 5-6 breaths for the inhaler to work. Unfortunately you are in a situation where you have no choice but to administer the medication - however, there are things you can try rather than just going with the horrible approach of holding him down and causing him a lot of upset.

    First thing I would recommend to do is get your son comfortable with the spacer and inhaler (under your full supervision of course). Let him look at them and touch them - so they don't seem so scary.

    If he has a favourite teddy, I would also encourage you to do some role play with your son. Along the lines of teddy has a bad cough - get your son to get his spacer and inhaler and ""give"" the medicine to teddy. You should ""give"" it just as you need to your son - so put the spacer mask over teddy's nose, pretend to press the inhaler and have teddy take 5 big breaths! Then have teddy's cough get better etc, to aid in your son's understanding.

    You can also take your son out to buy some stickers to decorate his spacer - again just makes it a bit less frightening. You can also have a song you sing while your son is breathing through the spacer, if that is more appealing to him than counting breaths - so long as he's getting a good dose inhaled.

    I know this all sounds like a lot of work, but if your son has asthma it will pay off in the long run.

    Hope this helps - good luck :)

  • Its not nice when they cry and scream my son was the same sometimes i had no choice but to hold him down, he did however really suck te ventolin when he screamed and took deep breaths. its a hard one as its not something you can just give or take. it does get easier my son is now really good as he is used to it and realises how much better it makes him feel good luck. The reply is excllent all those ideas are very helpful i tried them and they worked .

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