Get our weekly guide to the best local family events!
Any parent of an asthmatic child sometimes feels helpless. Not being able to breathe sufficiently is a scary feeling for a child...and a parent. Yet, asthma need not be a life sentence and kids don't have to miss out on fun. According to Jo Frost, host and parenting expert of the popular TV show, SuperNanny, communication is key. An asthma sufferer herself since age five, Frost knows firsthand the difficulties of growing up with the disease. "It can be very scary. However, through continuous conversation with my parents, keeping up with pediatrician visits, and advised medical care, I was able to enjoy a childhood like any other kid. I was very active in sports. I ran and swam. My parents led by example by being very interactive with me," says Frost.
Frost has partnered with the Allergy & Asthma Network Mothers of Asthmatics (AANMA) and Merck & Co., Inc., to provide parents with useful, interactive tools for dealing with asthma through a new website, www.Time2TalkAsthma.com. While asthma is a chronic condition that cannot be cured, it can be controlled. "Time2TalkAsthma.com offers a whole load of information that can be downloaded to empower parents by giving them more knowledge so they can manage asthma by not being passive about it, but proactive," Frost explains. She firmly believes that managing asthma is a group effort that should involve parents, healthcare professionals, teachers, childcare workers...and the child.
The more openly parents talk to their children about asthma, the better prepared they will be to help control it, and actively take part in their own well-being. Frost advises parents to talk with their kids early on about their condition, help them recognize symptoms and triggers, and identify when they might need to reach for a nebulizer or inhaler. It's also important that anyone who watches your child have the same knowledge and know ahead of time what signs to look out for, such as fast talking or labored breathing. Likewise, keep medications and devices easily accessible and make sure all family members and caregivers know where they are at all times.
At school, Frost advises parents to keep teachers in the loop. Set up appointments at the beginning of the school year with your child's school nurse, teachers, coaches, and principal to explain your child's specific needs.
Visit www.Time2TalkAsthma.com for informative tools, including a medical checklist for doctor's appointments, a sample asthma action plan for your doctor, tips for babysitters, and a cheat sheet for medical terms related to asthma.
Jo's Tips for Siblings: Make sure you also talk to siblings. Feelings of rivalry, jealousy, or resentment can crop up if siblings feel that the asthmatic child is getting special treatment or more attention from you. Talk to all your children openly and make sure they understand that you have to work together as a family to help with asthma management at home. Make sure all your children get to spend some one-on-one time with you, but also set aside time to do things together as a family. And importantly, don't forget to set aside time for yourself.
Facts on Asthma in Children
Courtesy of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Small airborne particles such as pollen, dust mites, and mold have been associated with respiratory symptoms in children with asthma; changing weather conditions, including extreme temperatures, barometric fluctuations, and high humidity have also been associated with asthma flare-ups.
Tips to Help Reduce Symptoms
Download these easy-to-use asthma tools at www.Time2TalkAsthma.com.
42 High St.
Huntington, NY 11743
62 Lake Ave. S., Suite A
Nesconset, NY 11767
19 West 34th, Penthouse
New York, NY 10001
Danielle Sullivan is an essayist, fiction writer, and a big Dave Matthews fan. She lives with her husband and children in Brooklyn, New York. Visit her at www.Danielle-Sullivan.com. See More.
FIND LOCAL EVENTS:
Sep 23, 2017
May 18, 2015
Jun 26, 2017
Sep 06, 2017
Aug 31, 2017
Aug 30, 2017
Aug 24, 2017
NYMetroParents directories list the best businesses, professionals, and resources in your area. Click your region and get started!
Get NY MetroParents via Email