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Asthma in Children Tips

About 1 Lakh Children Died Of Air Pollution in 2016 - Wake Up Now!

MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery
General Physician, Faridabad
About 1 Lakh Children Died Of Air Pollution in 2016 - Wake Up Now!

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) report, out of 194 countries, India recorded the highest death rate of children below five years due to indoor and outdoor air pollution. This report also estimated that India has the second highest death rate overall due to air pollution, after Nigeria.

Another report, titled, "Air Pollution and Child Health", estimated that in 2016 approximately 100,000 children (below 5 years) died due to respiratory complications caused by outdoor and indoor air pollution.

According to WHO, about 98% of children below 5 years are exposed to PM 2.5 pollutants in India that exceed normal pollutant levels. These small particles are capable of entering the bloodstream and cause many acute lower respiratory diseases.

This study also estimated that high levels of Polycyclic Aromatic, Carcinogenic Compound and Hydrocarbons (PAHs) have been seen in the sample of women's breasts. This is one of the reasons behind pollutants entering bodies of lactating children.

Diseases Caused Among Children Due to Air Pollution

The report also stated that most of the children who are exposed to these pollutants have respiratory diseases like Leukaemia, Retinoblastoma, Otitis Media, Asthma, Nutritional Deficiency, Vitamin D Deficiency, etc. WHO reports have also established that exposure to these pollutants can lead to many behavioural disorders such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, autism spectrum disorder, insulin resistance, and obesity.

  1. Deficiency of Vitamin D: Children who are continuously exposed to air pollutants are at risk of deficiency of Vitamin D. Deficiency of Vitamin D caused many diseases and lower the nutritional level of the body.
  2. Weak Immune System: Exposure to pollutants can even affect the immune system. High pollutants can alter the ability of the Immune System and lead to disturbance in the Hormonal System.
  3. Asthma: One of the main problems that occur in adults as well as children due to pollution is Asthma. It lowers the breathing rate of children. 
  4. Pneumonia: Inhaling air with pollutants can block the nasal passage and cause Pneumonia.
  5. Leukaemia and Retinoblastoma: Exposing a high concentration of pollutants may also lead to many serious issues like Leukaemia (Blood Cancer) or Retinoblastoma (Eye Cancer). 
  6. Lung and Brain Development: Weak immune systems and nutritional deficiencies can also affect the development of organs like Lung and Brain. High pollutant concentration in bloodstream may destroy nerve cells and lead to many behavioural disorders.

How to Protect Children from Air Pollution?

There are many ways to protect children from air pollution. It is also very important to protect the mother if the child is infant.

Some of the air pollution prevention methods are listed below:  

  • Less use of vehicles. Prefer walking or cycling
  • Maximize the use of renewable energy
  • Grow plants in houses and surroundings
  • Use protection mask while stepping out of the house
  • Keep the environment neat and clean
  • Routine checkup of lactating mother and child
  • Reduce the usage of plastics
  • Stop stubble and garbage burning

It's a major cause of concern that India has recorded the highest number of child deaths due to pollution in 2016. We need to come together as a country and start following sustainable practices so as to reduce this menace of pollution and provide a healthy environment for our children.

1 person found this helpful

Homeopathic Treatment and Remedies for Asthma in Children

Dr. Kalyani Badwaik 91% (1206 ratings)
BHMS, M.D.
Homeopath, Pune
Homeopathic Treatment and Remedies for Asthma in Children

Asthma, which occurs in adults and children, is a chronic inflammatory disorder of the airways characterized by reversible airflow obstruction. The airways become narrow and lungs become inflamed.
Both allergies and asthma runs in families. If you have family history of allergies or asthma, it is more likely that your child will have them.

Signs and symptoms of asthma in children:

Not all children have the same asthma symptoms, and these symptoms can vary from episode to episode in a same child. It’s characteristic features include wheezing (whistling sound when breathing in or out). Frequent coughing spells, which may occur during play, at night, or while laughing and crying etc.; usually, cough is non productive and non-paroxysmal; it may present with wheezing. Other symptoms includes: less energy during play, shortness of breath, tightened chest and neck muscles, feeling of weakness or tiredness.

Asthma is usually triggered by:

  • Cigarette smoke (including exposure to secondhand smoke)
  • Air pollution
  • Intense exercise
  • Allergens
  • Anxiety
  • Cold air
  • Upper respiratory track infections.

Role of homeopathy in asthma in children.

Homeopathy is a system of medicine which tries to cure this disease, instead of trying to provide symptomatic relief. The correct homeopathic remedy can avert an acute crisis, while ongoing treatment will work to clear condition completely.
Homeopathy offers holistic treatment as it goes into root of problem and treat the source.
While dealing with the case of asthma, a homeopath not only records the symptoms of the disease but also studies the medical history, family history, physical and psychological characteristics (temperament) of the person. This helps to find the cause of precipitating factor and the hereditary tendency etc.

Now after ascertaining the symptoms and the cause, the homeopath finds the medicine which matches the symptoms as well as general characteristics of the patient. Such well selected remedy gives complete relief and cure without any side effects.

Homeopathic medicines for asthma in children:
There are number of medicines in homeopathy for asthma symptoms and it is not possible to list them all here, few leading remedies as follows:

  • Natrum sulphuricum: this is a very useful remedy for asthma in both children and adults. There is difficulty in respiration that aggravates in damp, humid weather. There is severe cough that makes the child hold his chest as it hurts to cough. The onset of cold climatic condition triggers the asthma. Expectoration is greenish and copious.
  • Tuberculinum: this is a useful remedy for asthma patients as it helps build up the immune system to try to prevent recurrent colds and chest infections which may precipitate asthma attacks.
  • Blatta orientalist: this remedy is well suited in asthma symptoms such as aggravation of symptoms on exertion and ascending. Mouldy, damp environments worsen or trigger the asthma attract. There may also be allergy to mounds, mildew and rotting leaves.
  • Ipecacuanha: if asthma is associated with nausea or vomiting then ipecacuanha could be indicated. Patient presents with a constant cough with gagging and vomiting. The symptoms are worse in warm humid weather.
  • Sambucus niger: this remedy can be helpful particularly in childhood asthma. Especially indicated when asthma attack is worse at midnight. The asthmatic attack with marked perspiration, especially on waking.
  • Other remedies includes asr alb, spongia, pulsatilla, sulphur, hyper-sulp, antim-tart etc. Selection of medicine varies from patient to patient. Therefore, it is always recommended to consult qualified homeopath for treating your individual case.
2 people found this helpful

Asthma in Children - Symptoms and Management!

Dr. Maulik Shah 90% (144 ratings)
MBBS, MD - Paediatrics
Pediatrician, Jaipur
Asthma in Children - Symptoms and Management!

Asthma, as known to most, is a chronic respiratory condition characterized by swelling and narrowing of the airways with an increased mucus production. The condition can affect children as well adults. However, it is quite disturbing to see that asthma among children is on a mercurial rise. In many cases, children below the age of 5 years seem to be at the receiving end, complicating the things further. What is worse, being so small, some children are not even aware of their condition.

Recognising the Symptoms in Children

There may be a myriad of symptoms that could be an indication of asthma in children. However, not all children will exhibit similar symptoms. 

  1. A child may cough uncontrollably, especially while laughing, crying, playing or even at night (a night cough).
  2. Wheezing is also common in such children. One may also complain of chest tightness.
  3. Breathing troubles such as breathlessness or shortness of breath may be seen in some children.
  4. The child may feel weak and tired.
  5. The chest and the neck muscles also appear to be tightened.
  6. Many children are found to often suffer from cold resulting in a chest congestion.

In some children with asthma, coughing may be the only associated symptom, a condition known as Cough-Variant Asthma.

Factors that increase the risk of asthma in children

  1. Increased exposure to smoke. The exposure can be before or even after birth.
  2. Some children may suffer from hay fever, a kind of nasal allergy that often results in an asthmatic reaction. Eczema can also act as a potential trigger.
  3. Necessary precautions (as much as possible) should be taken for children who have a family history of asthma. Those with a family history of allergies also need to be careful.
  4. Asthma may affect children with low birth weight as well as those with respiratory infections. 

Self-Management

There is no denying the fact that a child with asthma should be under medical supervision with proper treatment. However, self-management can prove to be equally effective to keep asthma under control.

  1. As we all know asthma can be quite unpredictable, affecting the child at any point in time, always keep the medications and the inhaler handy. 
  2. It is always advisable to use a mask (especially those suffering from nasal allergies). 
  3. Get the child well vaccinated especially with the flu vaccination (the yearly vaccination).
  4. There are various factors (pollens, dust, cold, to name a few) that trigger an asthmatic reaction in a child. Identify the triggers and work towards keeping the child away from them as much as possible.
  5. The most important point, be in regular touch with the attending physician and keep an update on the condition.
  6. For school going children, the teachers and the school authorities should be informed about child's condition.
  7. Never panic in front of the child even in the case of an extreme and severe flare-up.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

2946 people found this helpful

Asthma In Children - How It Can Be Treated?

Dr. Rajkumar 90% (40 ratings)
MD, DTDC , MBBS
General Physician, Delhi
Asthma In Children - How It Can Be Treated?

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 characterised as asthma. In recent times, there has been a worrying increase in child asthma. Read on to find ways in which this can be treated.

Symptoms: Treating breathing difficulties is the first and foremost way of treating asthma in children. This is especially important because of the oxygen requirement for normal and proper development of the brain and rest of the body.

Long Term Medication: Inhaled Corticosteroids which act to combat inflammation and reduce the same, can be used by children. Also, leukotriene modifiers can be used along with these inhalers. But one must be careful of psychological reactions like aggression during the use of this medicine. Combination inhalers can also help in tackling agonists that can trigger severe and potentially fatal asthmatic attacks. Theophylline is another drug that can be taken on a daily basis to keep the bronchial tubes or air passages open.


Quick Relief Medication: Albuterol, pirbuterol, and levalbuterol are some of the medicines that can be used in the short term for quick and instant relief. Yet, there is no guarantee that the symptoms will not return and there is still a need for a child to undergo focussed and long term medication to alleviate the risk of severe attacks.

Immunotherapy: Asthmatic attacks that are caused due to the allergens like pollen, dust, smoke, nettle, pet hair, and other similar substances, will need a series of injections that contain a small measure of the allergens so that the immune system is strengthened. This will ensure that the child's allergic reactions and subsequent asthma attacks will gradually decrease.

Devices: Medication delivery devices like inhalers that will give you a measured dose, dry powder inhalers as well as nebulizers, will take the medication straight to the lungs for asthma relief and control.

Long terms diseases like asthma can greatly affect the growth and immunity of a child, which is why it is important to prevent and treat such attacks. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a General Physician.

3320 people found this helpful

Troubled Breathing - Can It Be a Sign of Asthma?

Dr. Nikhil Kalale 90% (24 ratings)
dnb pediatrics
Pediatrician,
Troubled Breathing - Can It Be a Sign of Asthma?

Is your child getting exhausted after a bout of cough? Does he or she suffer from constant wheezing and tightness of the chest? Does your child feel drained out after climbing a flight of stairs? Do you know a child who always seems to run out of breath and cannot participate in school sports tournaments or play outside for a long time? The child could be suffering from asthma, which is a serious breathing problem. Most children are affected by asthma. Staying in a polluted city just makes the condition worse.

Asthma - Know the disease

  1. Asthma is a condition that causes inflammation of the airways, known as trachea and bronchioles.
  2. The muscles around the airways constrict and prevent the smooth flow of air.
  3. The lining of the bronchioles swell and block the airways.
  4. Asthma is mostly triggered by an allergic reaction.
  5. There is a difficulty in breathing out. Exhalation of air is often accompanied by a wheezing, that is, a whistling sound.
  6. There is a constant shortness of breath, feeling out of breath and gasping for air.
  7. There is an uncomfortable tightness in the chest, the feeling of not breathing in enough air.
  8. Coughing bouts in the middle of the night, that leave the child feeling exhausted and completely out of breath.

Causes of Asthma 

Asthma is mostly triggered by asthma allergens. These allergens are mostly pollens and animal fur.

  1. Exposure to pollution, such as dust and smoke
  2. Heredity
  3. Obesity
  4. History of heartburn, GERD and acid reflux
  5. Inflammation of sinus and airways
  6. History of bronchial disorders and pneumonia
  7. Viral infections
  8. Chronic rhinitis
  9. Low immunity causing constant cold and blockage of nose

Treatments of asthma

  1. A nebulizer that turns asthma medicine into a mist can then be inhaled easily
  2. An inhaler can be used to take in inhaled steroids into the lungs or a bronchodilutor
  3. Try and avoid asthma triggers and allergens as much as possible
  4. Avoid physical stress and heat
  5. Get sufficient rest of about 7-8 hours every day 

    If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a pulmonologist.

2484 people found this helpful

Childhood Asthma - 8 Signs To Look For!

Dr. Nishantadeb Ghatak 88% (48 ratings)
MBBS,MD(PGI,Chandigarh)
Pediatrician, Kolkata
Childhood Asthma - 8 Signs To Look For!

The term asthma and bronchial asthma are often used interchangeably. Bronchial asthma refers to the chronic inflamation of the airways either due to some internal or environmental allergen. This leads to the narrowing of airways, which makes breathing difficult and blocks air from entering the lungs. Children are most affected by this condition as the immune system is still in the process of maturity and often grows out of it as they age. However, if not treated, this can lead to many complications like respiratory failure and can prove to be fatal. Asthma cases often spike in winter months and in the flowering season. It can also be triggered by second hand or passive smoke, stress, sudden unaccustomed physical exercise, food additives, dust, house mites, perfumes, certain drugs and many other allergens. A family history of asthma, allergic rhinitis, atopic dermatitis and other allergic conditions can also increase a child’s risk of suffering from this condition.

Some of the most noticeable symptoms of bronchial asthma include:

1. Wheezing 
2. Shortness of breath 
3. Excessive coughing that worsens at night 
4. Tightness of the chest 
5. Lowered energy levels 
6. Rapid breathing 
7. Tiredness 
8. Indrawing of chest and lower neck

These symptoms often worsen after exercising. Lung function test and Chest X-ray are often used to confirm a diagnosis of bronchial asthma. Once diagnosis is being confirmed, it should be categorized as per severity. Your doctor may prescribe medication in the form of pills and inhalants as per the category of disease. It is important to note that these cannot cure asthma, but can help manage it. Inhalers deliver low doses of steroids directly to the lungs to reduce inflammation and other inhaled medication like Beta 2 agonist will open the airway by relaxing the muscles of airway. Children suffering from asthma must be taught how to use the inhalers and should always have it with them. In the case of school going children, their teachers should also be informed about the condition. Parents should also know how to keep it, use it and clean the device in a proper and hygienic way.

In very small kids those inhalational medication can be given by face mask and spacer, but as the age grows or in case of elder children above 6 years of age, they can directly take the medication from spacer. Those children who are already on inhalers, but still face asthma attack , for them nebuliser is the better choice to manage the emergency. It will make the liquid medicine into mist and enters into the air passage easily and work promptly.

In addition, certain lifestyle changes can also help reduce the frequency of asthmatic attacks. Avoid going outdoors on windy days or days when air pollutant level is high. Reduce the child’s exposure to allergens like pet hair, dander and dust by dusting and vacuuming on a weekly basis. Avoid the use of humidifiers inside your house as moist air can promote the infestation of dust mites. Try to keep the child in a room with adequate air and sunlight. Take plenty of green leafy vegetables and fruits, which contain lots of vitamins and minerals. If possible get your child to wear cover his or her nose and mouth while in outdoors. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a doctor and ask a free question.

3743 people found this helpful
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