What happens to my child during an asthma attack?
- Asthma is the condition of inflamed and constricted airways, leading potentially to a range of respiratory complications. The airways swell up and produce large amounts of thick mucus. The inflamed airways are very sensitive, and can be affected by a number of substances which can cause the smooth muscle around them to tighten up.
What situations and substances may trigger attacks?
- Pay close attention to what your child is breathing both inside and outside the home. Common triggers include allergens such as pet dander, pollen, mold and dust, but also weather changes, viral infections, and exposure to harsh environmental factors like air pollution and secondhand smoke.
What symptoms should I be aware of?
- It’s important to be vigilant if you suspect your child may be at risk for or developing asthma. Pay attention to your child’s breathing. A majority of parents think that if they don’t hear wheezing, there no cause for concern. Sometimes a mild cough can indicate asthma. Watch carefully for frequent coughing, especially at night, or with playing, laughing or crying, wheezing, shortness of breath, chest congestion, tightness, or pain or delayed recovery from other respiratory illnesses (e.g., bronchitis).