Asthma is a painful pulmonary disease that is usually caused due to inflammation of the air passages. The tubes that help us breathe in and out can get contaminated with pollutants and allergens like dust, smoke, pet hair, pollen and nettle, amongst various other substances. This can lead to coughing, shortness of breath, chest pain due to breathing difficulties and wheezing as the lungs try to get more oxygen which cannot pass through the swollen airways. This is usually at least as asthma.read more
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Asthma is a painful pulmonary disease that is usually caused due to inflammation of the air passages. The tubes that help us breathe in and out can get contaminated with pollutants and allergens like dust, smoke, pet hair, pollen and nettle, amongst various other substances. This can lead to coughing, shortness of breath, chest pain due to breathing difficulties and wheezing as the lungs try to get more oxygen which cannot pass through the swollen airways. This is usually at least as asthma.
Stomach aches or abdominal pains are one of the most frequently reported health complaints faced by children. Children below the age of twelve are known to suffer from recurrent stomach pain. While pains such as these lead to momentary discomfiture, they also lay the path for graver worries if neglected for too long. Your child may feel sick and bunk school for two days; rest and home care can restore his or her health, but that in no way, is the best-suited way of dealing with the situation. If tummy aches resurface over a certain period of time, parents should be cautious enough to look for the root cause and should try to eliminate it accordingly.
Widely noticed causes of stomach aches in children:
- Unhygienic food can affect a child’s digestive system.
- Intolerance to a certain food item should not be overlooked.
- Perpetual anxiety can make the tummy twist and turn.
- Urinary Tract Infections can also lead to acute abdominal pain.
- Serious factors such as gallstones or appendicitis could also be present. Immediate expert consultation is advised in such a case.
- Caffeine and packaged soft drinks can be harmful.
- Butter, ghee and other greasy products can trigger tummy aches.
Ways to treat tummy aches in children:
- Keep children away from gas producing food items: Food that is hard to digest should be avoided. Lentil soup or dal should only be consumed in limited amounts to prevent the formation of gas. Don’t let your child have too many nuts regularly.
- Keep them hydrated: Fluid intake should be monitored. A child should drink at least six to seven glasses of water per day. Fruit juices or soups can also be given to them alongside main meals. This helps digestion.
- Do not stack up food in one go: Eating a lot in one meal is a bad way of satisfying hunger. Have smaller meals in more numbers. Six to eight meals will keep your child full and will also eliminate the chances of acid reflux which happens either due to an empty stomach or too much piling up of greasy food.
- Timely check - up with the doctor: If tummy aches refuse to go away, take your child to a doctor for a thorough check-up. Administer medicines as prescribed by the physician.
Depression in children is not a very uncommon phenomenon. But if the feeling of sadness persists over a period of time with little or no change to their behavior, then it can be seen as a symptom of depression. Children who are suffering from depression need immediate and utmost care as negligence may cause severe long term effects on the child. Read on to find more about them.
Symptoms that indicate childhood depression vary. Some of the different symptoms which indicate depression are:
1. Social withdrawal
3. Feeling of worthlessness
4. Difficulty in concentrating
5. Reduced ability to function during events
6. Continuous feelings of sadness
7. Physical complaints
1. Depression in children can be caused due to the combination of a multitude of reasons.
2. Children from a family history of depression are more likely to be suffering from depression.
3. Similarly if the parents suffer from depression then it is more than likely that the child will also suffer from depression.
4. Children from conflicted families or children and teens who are prone to substance or alcohol abuse can suffer from depression.
5. Reasons such as physical health, environment, genetic vulnerability or biochemical disturbance can lead to depression.
The treatment process of depression in children is similar to that of adults and can be treated with psychotherapy and medication. If your child is depressed consult a general physician who after his or her diagnosis may refer you to a psychiatrist. The medical specialist will recommend psychotherapy sessions at first and then opt for anti-depressant medication if no significant progress is seen. The best results often result from a combination of prescribed medication along with multiple sessions of psychotherapy.
In some instances, a child suffering from depression maybe be suicidal. Parents are advised to be vigilant and observe certain behavioral changes that the child may have adapted to or suddenly switched to.
Some of the signs are mentioned below-
1. Changes in eating, sleeping or activities
2. Isolating oneself even from family
3. Talking of suicide, feeling helpless or hopeless
4. Increased risk taking behavior
5. Substance abuse
6. Giving away possessions
Has your child been coughing frequently lately? Is the cough chronic in nature, making your child breathe rapidly, and does he/she complain about a tightened chest? These symptoms signify that your child is having asthma. Asthma is a medical condition characterized by paroxysmal wheezing respiration dyspnoea. It is common in children and an affected child experiences difficulty in breathing, and a whizzing sound is produced, especially during expiration. Asthma may lead to severe health complications and needs immediate diagnosis and treatment.
Diagnosis: The diagnosis of asthma is based on the symptoms, medical history and a physical examination of the child.
- Medical history and symptoms: You must tell the doctor about any history of breathing trouble with your child or whether there are chances of other inherited health conditions. You must explain your child's symptoms properly, which may include coughing, wheezing, chest pain or tightness and others if observed.
- Physical examination: A physical exam will be carried out in your child where the doctor will listen to his heart and lungs, and look for eye or nose allergies.
- Medical tests: A chest X-ray of the child has to be carried out, along with a simple lung function test known as spirometry. This test measures the amount of air present in the lungs and determines how fast it can be exhaled. Spirometry enables a doctor to determine the severity of the asthma. Some other tests are also carried out for the identification of asthma triggers. They include allergy skin testing, blood tests and X-rays to know if sinus infections are affecting the asthma. An asthma test determines the amount of nitric oxide in your child's breath.
Treatment: Based on your child's severity of asthma symptoms and his medical history, the doctor will provide you with an action plan to treat the same. This action plan explains all the medications your child requires, the dosage and schedule of the medicines. The plan also includes points on what to do when the asthma worsens and when an emergency treatment is required. Anti-inflammatory drugs are prescribed to children who require bronchodilator medication. All asthma medicines used by adults can be used in case of children but in lower dosages.
You should give the asthma medications to your child using a home nebulizer or a breathing machine. A nebulizer delivers asthma drugs by transforming them from liquid to a mist. The child gets the drug by breathing it via a face mask.
In order to control and manage asthma in children, they must avoid the triggers and should keep away from any source of smoke. A doctor must be consulted to know about the best diagnosis and treatment methods.