Alphabetic Guide to Child Care - Treatment and prevention

Treatment and Prevention

Suspected asthma should be carefully assessed by a physician to determine the nature and degree of the asthma and what steps should be taken. Often, desensitization to a certain food or pollen is necessary, or a pet has to be given away. Environmental factors or emotional stress also may play a role. Chronic asthma should never go untreated because frequent attacks can affect overall health. A wide range of medications exist to control asthma. Such medications include corticosteroids, which treat inflammation, and bronchodilators, which may be used when anti-inflammatory drugs are not fully effective. Both of these medicines are available in inhalant form. Allergy injection therapy, which aims to build up immunity, may be recommended for a child whose asthma is triggered by allergens. Other medications come in pill or liquid form. Over-the-counter products may temporarily relieve less severe asthma symptoms.

Aerobic exercise is also recommended for some asthmatics. It raises heart rates and makes the heart pump more blood, thereby improving lung function and overall health.

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