Every year there is a sharp rise in the number of asthma attacks for children when they return to school after the summer break. This results in a significant increase in Emergency Department visits, hospitalisations and days off school. Not only is this unsettling for children as they start a new year at school, but often it impacts on time off work for the parents/carers also.
Why do asthma flare-ups happen at this time?
Our asthma experts tell us that major factors include:
- With the loss of routine over the summer holidays and business of the Christmas period, sometimes preventer medicines are not taken daily as prescribed and Asthma Action Plans are not adhered to as strictly.
- The inevitable spread of viruses when children return to school and mix with each other.
What role do parents and carers play?
You can help your child be prepared and have a healthy start to the new school year.
Stay on top of your child’s asthma management over the holidays.
To ensure your child is prepared for the return to school:
- See your GP before Christmas to update your child’s Asthma Plan
- Ensure you pack your child’s asthma medication on all holiday outings
- Keep vigilant with your child’s preventer medication and ensure they take this as prescribed and
- Follow your child’s Asthma Plan for a happy and healthy holiday
For more information on asthma in children visit https://asthma.org.au/about-asthma/asthma-and-your-child/
Visit your local pharmacy
Throughout January and February 2020, TerryWhite Chemmart will be ensuring parents and carers of children with asthma have:
- reliever medication, spacer and mask, all clearly labelled with their child’s details,
- an inhaler technique demonstration to ensure their child is getting the correct dose of medicine into the lungs, and
- understand the importance of talking with their child’s teacher and school about asthma management for their child.
Visit the TerryWhite Chemmart store locator here
Talk with your child’s teacher
- Asthma is different for every child. When meeting with your child’s teacher, discuss your child’s asthma, including their symptoms and severity.
- You can use your child’s Asthma Plan as a tool to talk about their asthma medication, how to use this (a demonstration could be helpful) and the extent to which they can self-manage.
- Ask about your child’s school asthma policy and establish two-way communication channels around your child’s asthma, including reporting of any flare-ups and use of medication at school.
For more information on asthma call 1800 ASTHMA (1800 278 462)