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Tips to keep asthma at bay please

(48 Posts)
PartyFops Mon 26-Nov-12 20:27:14

DD (19m) has just been diagnosed with Asthma and is also recovering from pneumonia. I am so new to this asthma thing it makes my head spin a bit.

Does anyone have any tips for me to try and keep it at bay, for instance is a warm bedroom suggested, her room can get really cold but I wrap her up really well, but will the cold air cause a problem?

Do I avoid taking her swimming, which she loves.

Do I now need to hoover the house every day? ( I have 3 cats)

Should I start avoiding dairy?

Should I avoid having log fires? (we only ever have these after she has gone to bed).

Any tips?

stargirl1701 Mon 26-Nov-12 20:35:48

I don't know if childhood asthma is different but, as an adult, I find the following helps:

No carpet in bedroom
Window open in bedroom
Mattress hoovered every week
Pillows and duvet washed every 3 months
Fresh sheets every week
No air freshness in house
Open windows in house for an hour or two
No feather cushions or pillows/duvets
No wool or feather clothing
Unscented laundry powder
Roll on deo not sprays
No strong cleaners, e.g. Oven cleaner, Cillit Bang, etc.
Wax polish rather than spray

I struggle with changes in temperature - hung from cold to hot, outdoor to indoor and vice versa. It's not the temp as such but the change.

I find swimming very helpful as breathing out under water really improves my peak flow. But, I have to spend some time in the cafe afterwards if it is cold outside (see above).

Can't think of any more off the top of my head. Hope this helps.

stargirl1701 Mon 26-Nov-12 20:36:21

Air Freshners. Damn iPad auto correct.

GrimAndHumourlessAndEven Mon 26-Nov-12 20:40:05

what meds has she been prescribed?

wafflingworrier Mon 26-Nov-12 20:41:04

don't dry laundry in the house if you can help it and get a de-humidifier, alternate which room you put it in daily. this has done wonders for my wee one, i hope it helps yours too

ChablisLover Mon 26-Nov-12 20:42:06

Wet dusting also helps

What is her asthma trigger? Everyone is different.

PartyFops Mon 26-Nov-12 21:13:29

Thank you stargirl for your tips. And a good excuse to have coffee and cake in the cafe afterwards.

grim she is on Montelukast for 3 months, and brown inhaler 2 puffs twice a day plus blue inhaler when needed. On top of the 7 day course of ABs for the Pnuemonia.

waffling we have a tumble drier as i am very lazy, and I have been using a humidifier rather than a de humidifier at night, do you think this is a bad idea? We dont have any problems with condensation. The humidifier was used to try and clear her chest.

Chablis I do tend to wet dust presuming i know what that means as I tend to use flash wipes on everything. I dont really know what her triggers are, at the moment the only thing I can think of is having a cold. It will be trial and error I guess.

PartyFops Mon 26-Nov-12 22:10:04

Any more tips anyone, this is a whole new world for me.

P.s anyone want 3 cats? wink

3b1g Mon 26-Nov-12 22:14:55

If there is any damp in the bedroom then you might need a dehumidifier.

In the summer we can't dry any laundry outside as the pollen makes things worse.

We don't let the cat upstairs into the bedrooms and we don't have carpet downstairs.

It has got much better with age. Each year is better than the last.

PartyFops Mon 26-Nov-12 22:18:11

We have been using a humidifier to help with the chest infection, but i think its not good long term (probably been using it for a week now) so will get the dehumidifier out tomorrow. There were a few mould spots on the window frames from using humidifier but these have all been cleaned off with mould cleaner.

I really hope she will grow out of it.

I didnt notice her suffer in the summer, being out in the garden so hopefully pollen wont be a factor.

CanIHaveAPetGiraffePlease Mon 26-Nov-12 22:21:34

Do you know if she's allergic to cats? I'm severely allergic and yes my asthma was very much better as a child when ours were rehomed :-(

SantasHugandRollintheSnow Mon 26-Nov-12 22:25:41

I find the dramatic changes in weather/temperature are the worst triggers for my ds1 (who had a whole weekend of asthma attacks a week ago due to the bad weather). Don't ignore an unproductive cough, especially at night that they can't seem to stop, that's when the blue inhaler is to be used. General advice is they can have up to 10'puffs in an hour, if that doesn't help go to A&E.

Ventolin makes children hyper, don't be surprised if they are having an attack, look poorly and listless, have the ventolin and after a while start running around like headless chickens grin.

PartyFops Mon 26-Nov-12 22:29:43

I dont know if she is allergic to cats, we stayed at my dads in the summer for 2 weeks and he doesnt have cats, and was still coughing badly whilst there.

But the cats do add a massive amount of dust to the home. I need to step up the hoovering and perhaps renew my 8 year old dyson for one with a hepa filter.

Sirzy Mon 26-Nov-12 22:37:05

I think the key is finding the triggers (which is easier said than done, Ds has been diagnosed for 2 years and had bloods done today to try to find what we are missing)

Does she have trouble all the time or just when ill?

ClueLessFirstTime Mon 26-Nov-12 22:41:46

- find out what the triggers are (food, fabrics, damp, mould, pets, exercise) and avoid.
- take the medicines as prescribed. if they don't work as well get back to gp
- find out what makes it better (outside air, inside air, humidifier, heat, cold)

...and go from there

mercibucket Mon 26-Nov-12 22:41:51

Vitamin d supplements - make sure it's d3

And not related to the asthma, but worth boosting iron as well. Dd was low after fighting off pneumonia. Spatone in juice is nice and easy

The asthma might only be temporary after the pneumonia. Dd needed an inhaler for a few months but we hardly used it

mercibucket Mon 26-Nov-12 22:42:00

Vitamin d supplements - make sure it's d3

And not related to the asthma, but worth boosting iron as well. Dd was low after fighting off pneumonia. Spatone in juice is nice and easy

The asthma might only be temporary after the pneumonia. Dd needed an inhaler for a few months but we hardly used it

gomummygone Mon 26-Nov-12 22:42:10

DS has asthma and has had pneumonia twice, so I am quite obsessive about it, but do think it depends on your DD's triggers as well. For us:

A humidistat measures the humidity in his room; we use a dehumidifier in summer and a humidifier in winter to keep him at exactly the percentage where he is best. This has been the biggest thing by far.

We live in Canada and heat only with wood for half of the year, so it gets dry if we don't add humidity - other than that, the wood fire does not make any difference to him (we tested for 3 months on oil heat only after his first pneumonia experience!) I also line dry all of our laundry in the house in winter to add humidity, etc.

I change his pillowcases daily, sheets weekly at least, and wash duvet every two weeks (yes the duvet is a pain!). Everything in hot. He has the "allergy free" duvet, mattress cover and pillow covers - though we finally got in for testing and he has no allergies they can find.

All hard surface floors throughout the house, excepting an area rug downstairs which is vaccuumed 2x/week with a hepa vac.

Vaccuum curtains in DS' room with hepa vac weekly, dust almost daily (swipe with damp cloth).

Nothing scented anywhere in the house anymore, including detergent.

Pets didn't make a difference with us, but I know they do for a lot of people.

I think different things work for different people, especially humidity and dust-wise. Good luck.x

Whojamaflip Mon 26-Nov-12 22:45:23

yy to identifying triggers - ds1 suffers and needs his inhalers when the weather changes to damp and cold or if he goes from hot to cold (we tend to keep the house on the cooler side and no heating in the bedroom as he is more comfortable. Oh and we keep him off artificial sugars as much as possible as that really sets him off (last time he had a Fruit Shoot he ended up in hospital sad )

However animals have no effect on him - in fact he takes his long haired cat to bed with him - I usually have to kick it out at bedtime. grin

Sirzy Mon 26-Nov-12 22:45:59

Also have you been shown how to use the inhaler and spacer properly? Reading a lot of threads on here they are often prescribed with no training on how to use them meaning they aren't as effective as they should be.

PartyFops Mon 26-Nov-12 22:47:20

Sirzy, it all started with coughing that wouldnt go away, she has had a cough on and off since June. It would get much worse when she had a cold. Last week (as in the asthma thread) I took her to A&E and was later referred by GP to the ped, who diagnosed pnumonia and asthma.

I must say that I am not 100% convinced about the asthma but I will do everything I can to get her better. Her breathing was still laboured today, I noticed her neck going in and out when she breathed, (which may well be normal, but I hadn't noticed it until the last week)

PartyFops Mon 26-Nov-12 22:52:33

Wow lots of great tips, thank you.

We weren't initially shown how to use the spacers properly when given by the GP in September, but we were shown in hospital on friday.

ClueLessFirstTime Mon 26-Nov-12 22:56:14

doesn't matterbif it is 'proper' asthma or not, the treatment is the same.

maybe try damp dusting with just a damp cloth for a bit to see if that make a difference?

Jojay Mon 26-Nov-12 23:06:25

It really depends on what her triggers are.

My Ds's suffer from viral wheeze which gives asthma symptoms, severe at times. (they've been hospitalised several times, on quite strong preventer meds)

They've been allergy tested too and they came back negative to cats, dogs, house dustmites, and grass and tree pollen, so avoiding those things makes not one jot of difference to them.

Saying that, your DD's symptoms don't sound like viral wheeze as it's been going on for so long - you say coughing since June. That might well be allergy triggered.

Have to been referrred to an asthma nurse? They're great on this kind of thing, and push for allergy testing.

gomummygone Mon 26-Nov-12 23:54:25

Yy to asthma nurse, they are fab.

Paediatric allergist explained to us how limited allergy testing is, said that they only find the allergen in about 15% of cases. Notes help a lot in this situation - especially when is it worse? At night, lying down, after activity, in heat or cold, even things like visiting certain places, eating certain foods, etc.

Hope your DD is feeling better soon.

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