Summer in New England is a brief but glorious time when many families experience a change in pace as schools let out and activities slow. Weeks that were once packed with classes, homework and practice are suddenly open for new activities. Whether these include summer camps, daycare, sports teams or beach days, summer days can offer new fun—and a new set of challenges for effective management of your child’s asthma.
Many people with asthma may find their symptoms worsened by triggers associated with warmer weather and summer fun. High levels of urban smog and summer pollen can trigger wheezing, coughing, difficulty in breathing, and can even result in hospitalization in serious cases. Other common summer triggers include wood smoke from camp fires and physical activity for people with exercise-induced asthma.
Additionally, routines that had been established during the school year to manage your child’s asthma must be modified for irregular summer schedules. This can make it more difficult to find time to help your child take controller medications. And it’s likely that summer care providers may be unfamiliar with your child’s Asthma Action Plan or medication needs.
In order to ensure that your child can live a healthy, active life with asthma in the summer, parents and care givers can take action in the following ways.
- Find a set time to give your child his/her controller medications, so that even as schedules change, this remains a daily constant.
- Review your child’s Asthma Action Plan (AAP) as a family, and go over the AAP with anyone that cares for your child, including grandparents and babysitters.
- Review your child’s AAP with coaches and child care providers.
- Create an On-the-Go pack with an emergency inhaler and AAP that your child can quickly throw into a day bag. If that’s not practical, just make sure that anyone that cares for your child has access to the emergency inhaler and knows how to administer it.
Understand what triggers your child’s asthma and pay attention to high pollen or smog days if necessary. Talk to your pediatrician about getting an updated Asthma Action Plan for warm-weather triggers, if needed.
To learn more about the ways that partners across Massachusetts will tackle asthma in the next five years, please join us for the Massachusetts Asthma Action Partnership (MAAP) Summit on July 29. At this meeting, the DPH Asthma Prevention and Control Program will unveil the Strategic Plan for Asthma in Massachusetts 2015 – 2020. You can find more information at the link:
Written By: Elisa Tedeschi
Tags: active, active living, asthma summer, community, Department of Public Health, DPH, exercise, health, healthy kids, healthy living, kids, Massachusetts, mental wellness, outdoors, physical activity, Prevention, public health, youth
Getting to the Root of Some Tasty Vegetables! posted on Sep 29
Fall is in full bloom with its wide selection of root vegetables available to our families! The truth is…these veggies that grow and sprout out of the dirt can be a little intimidating to some of us. They have a thicker skin, longer stems and …Continue Reading Getting to the Root of Some Tasty Vegetables!
A Community Partnership to Prevent Falls Among Older Adults posted on Sep 24
Each year in the United States, one out of every three adults age 65 and over experiences a fall. And in Massachusetts, every 13 minutes (on average) an older adult requires treatment in an emergency room for fall-related injuries. The human toll of these injuries …Continue Reading A Community Partnership to Prevent Falls Among Older Adults
Declutter Your Space, Declutter Your Mind posted on Sep 24
It can be hard to let go of things. Your favorite pair of jeans with big holes in the knees, those dusty books that have been on the shelf for years, or your old Beanie Baby collection from when you were a kid, for example. …Continue Reading Declutter Your Space, Declutter Your Mind