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3/23/20blog post

managing childhood asthma during the coronavirus pandemic

As coronavirus continues to sweep our state, country and world we are all left with what feels like more questions than answers. This is especially true of parents with a child with a chronic condition. With shortness of breath being a key symptom of COVID-19, parents of children with asthma may have extra concerns and questions.

Asthma is a leading chronic disease for children and it’s important to make sure that this disease is always managed appropriately. As our country battles the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s important to pay special attention to children with asthma.

COVID-19 is a respiratory virus whose family commonly causes a cold or flulike symptoms. For anyone with asthma an infection with the COVID-19 could certainly experience an worsening of their asthma.

Because humans have low immunity to this virus, it is causing health emergencies typically related to severe pneumonia. While we don’t completely understand yet how COVID-19 works or its impact on kids with asthma, it’s better to be cautious.

5 reminders to help kids with asthma manage through this pandemic:

1. Follow your asthma plan and take your asthma medications as prescribed. Controller medications are important to help your child manage their asthma at all times but especially when there are so many unknowns to this disease.

2. Wash hands frequently. Washing hands is the best way to stop the transfer of viruses. Good hygiene is important for everyone, but especially for kids with asthma.

3. Avoid asthma triggers. Asthma can be triggered by a variety of things including dust, pollen, and cigarette smoke.  While kids are spending more time indoors it important to keep homes free from asthma triggers whenever possible.

4. Avoid large crowds and practice social distancing. Social distancing is important for everyone right now, especially for kids with asthma or underlying health conditions.

5. Seek medical attention if developing respiratory difficulties. While people are limiting unnecessary appointments, respiratory difficulty needs to be addressed.  Consider telehealth options offered by your physician or insurance company.

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Daniel Evans, MD

division chief pulmonology
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updates on COVID-19

Please use our coronavirus information hub for resources and answers to frequently asked questions about Dayton Children's response to COVID-19. You can also call our COVID-19 parent hotline at 1-888-746-KIDS (5437) from 8:00 am – 8:00 pm for additional questions.