As a parent you are an important member of your child's asthma care team. In fact, when your child is young, you will need to act as your child's spokesperson, until he or she has effective verbal skills. You will always need to act as your child's advocate and the facilitator of communication among the members of your child's care team, including the doctor.
One thing to keep in mind is that childhood asthma treatment is a constantly changing field. And many times, it is also a trial and error process to find the best treatment plan for your child. You may want to think about consulting with an allergy/asthma specialist to make sure you're getting the best asthma care possible for your child.
More on Working With the Team:
- Advocating for an Asthma-Friendly School
- Helping Others Understand Your Kid's Asthma
- Tips for Talking With Your Child's Doctor
- Types of Doctors Who Treat Asthma
- Prepare Your Child for a Doctor Visit
- Should Your Doctor See an Allergist?
Coping With Asthma in Children
Asthma makes kids "different" and kids don't like to be different. So your child may need help coping with asthma. That's where you come in. Learning how to talk to your child about asthma is the first step. You can help your child understand about asthma and serve as a trusted coach and support person.
You can also help your child prepare for a healthy life by learning all he or she can about asthma. Many tools on the web can help with this, as noted below. You should also be able to find books in the library or at your local bookstore.
Learn How You Can Help Your Child:
- How to Talk to Your Child About Asthma
- Boost Your Kid's Self Esteem
- Videos & Fun Activities About Asthma for Young Kids
- Help Your Child Gain Control Over Asthma
- A Site for Teens With Asthma
Asthma can be stressful on the parent too. Add the constant threat of asthma emergencies, administering asthma medications, and coping with a sometimes cranky child to the usual stress of parenting, and you may find yourself getting worn down and in need of support.
You can look for local support groups or even just talk to other parents you know. Chances are, with childhood asthma being so common, more than a few of them will be dealing with similar challenges to your own. But you can also find plenty of support for coping with asthma in kids on the Web.
Learn More About Getting the Support You Need:
National Institutes of Health, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Guidelines for the diagnosis and management of asthma. <NIH Publication No. 97-4051>, July 1997.
American Lung Association, (2007). Childhood Asthma Overview. Retrieved April 21, 2007, from American Lung Association Web site: <http://www.lungusa.org/site/pp.asp?c=dvLUK9O0E&b=22782#remember>.
MedlinePlus, (2007, January 23). Asthma in Children. Retrieved April 22, 2007, from MedlinePlus Web site: <http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/asthmainchildren.html>.