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
Celebrate with Whole Grains in September! posted on Sep 29
by Jennifer Mayer & Terri Mendoza September marks Whole Grains Month! You probably already know that whole grains are an important part of a healthy diet. Here are just a few reasons why keeping the grain whole is worth celebrating: Whole grains are high in …Continue Reading Celebrate with Whole Grains in September!
September Is Suicide Prevention Month posted on Sep 21
September is National Suicide Prevention Month, and there is no better time to begin or renew our commitment to taking care of ourselves and each other. Too many people have been affected by the tragedy of suicide, either directly or indirectly, and we in the …Continue Reading September Is Suicide Prevention Month
Go Green with Green Pulao! posted on Sep 17
Kinnari Chitalia, RD, LDN, CLC, a nutritionist at the Dorchester North WIC Program, shares another favorite—and healthy—traditional recipe! Green pulao is a delicious rice recipe with aromatic blends of onion, cilantro, mint leaves and other traditional Indian spices. This dish goes especially well with …Continue Reading Go Green with Green Pulao!