New to asthma

Hi

Thanks in advance to any comments/advice. My 8 year old has recently been diagnosed with asthma. He seems to have allergic asthma however is also effected by the damp, cold and exercise. He doesn't have the typical wheeze or cough. His main symptom is getting very short of breath, sometimes just walking about or talking will set if off. His chest and neck also can be sore. He's finding it hard to know when to use his blue one I think mainly because for a long time he's been used to doing things whilst being so breathlesss. He also takes a preventative inhaler too. I was wondering if anyone else just has this symptom? Most articles I've read list coughing and wheezing as main symptoms. Thankfully he's never had a big attack that's resulted in a hospital visit however he's been needing his blue one a lot more recently to help with his breathlessness. Thanks x

12 Replies

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  • HI,

    And welcome to the forum

    Asthma is different in everyone and affects people differently throughout life

    The aim with asthma management is to be using the reliever (salbutamol) infrequently so he may need to have a medication review with a doctor

    However the change in weather has knackered me up recently and I'm finding it more difficult and tiring than I was just a few weeks ago

    If your son is getting short of breath does he also get pains in his chest? or a heavy/weighted feeling these are common symptoms of airway inflamation (he may also be noticeably short of breath)

    The thing to remember with the preventer is that it can take up to a month to start working noticably

    The other thing with allergic asthma is can you identify what he is allergic to? my gp told me to take an antihistamine for dust and pollen allergies (I had an elevated ige level)

    Chip

  • Thanks for your reply. He's noticeably short of breath and sometimes he says his chest hurts. I think he may need a stronger brown one - he's been back on it for about a month now. And has been on / off with it for just over a year.

  • The brown one is a preventer so he needs to take that one all the time (it is easier said than done).. these are a Steroid that prevents airway inflamation but works slowly

    And the blue one is a short acting broncho dilator (reliever)... the thing with the blue one is its fast acting and short lived (1 to 4 hours on a good day)

    If he has exercise induced asthma the doctor would normally recommend taking his blue inhaler before he starts exercise (to help keep the airways open )

    As for cold and damp either stay in (not practical I find) or wrap up warm and try and breathe through a scarf (to warm the air up slightly)

    Do you also monitor peak flow?... this can be a good way of 'predicting ' when your in for a rough time (the peak flow will drop)

    Also the pain in his chest is a sign of inflamation of the airways, there are two types of wheeze the one you can hear with the human ear and the one you can't (you need a doctor and stethoscope)

    How is he of a night and a morning?

    Chip

  • Thanks again. The dr has suggested we use his blue reliever before play and sports which has made a difference. He's fine at night and in the morning. It's when he starts moving the breathlessness starts. Last year before using inhalers (inc preventative) he used to cough at night during the winter but at the moment that's all stopped.

  • Nocturnal asthma is common especially of a winter and can be a sign of uncontrolled asthma

    Another thing to look at is hydration... as people in general aren't that good at staying hydrated (8 glasses a day is 200-250 ml every waking hour as a minimum).. the Dr said something to me about being dehydrated can cause a slight dryness in your airways causing inflamation and in turn symptoms

    Is he an active boy?... charging round playing etc

    You mentioned that it looks like he has allergic asthma?... do you have any idea what he is allergic to?... things I know are common this time of year are mold (indoor and outdoor) and dust

    It may also be that he needs an add on therapy (long acting broncho dilator) or a stronger/different steroid

  • Yes he's very active 😀 We are about to get some allergy testing too. Thanks

  • I've not long had allergy testing after having an ige level of 37 and then 41 (should be under 15) turns out I'm wildly allergic to dust and various pollens

    The doctor just told me to get an anti-histamine and avoid them where I can

    If he's active and running round that's a good thing the asthma nurse told me the more you use your lungs and kept them "elastic the better for you"- I assume she meant they will get stronger and lung function would be better etc etc.

    Cleaning chemicals and strong odours (perfumes etc) Can also be triggers for asthma

  • Just wondering how he takes his inhaler does he use a aero chamber? As this is much better way to administer medication.

    And to get a better dose. 😀

  • Hi thanks for your reply - yes he has a blue spacer.

  • Maybe a change of season thing.

    Just forward thinking on his behalf will help. If you know your going park/ outing a couple puffs. Will help. Good luck.

  • Great tip thanks

  • Sorry also try and remember to let him drink after as these inhalers can cause thrush in mouth/throat if not used correctly and by drinking or cleaning teeth after use helps prevent this.

    No need for added complications.

    If it does happen there is something called Nystan from dr couple drops around mouth sorts it. 😀

    If your venturing to any firework displays/trick or treating couple puffs before and when you return will help hopefully. It's all about prevention/pre thinking good luck😀

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