I saw a young asthmatic having a rare (and mild) wheezing episode this week. Her mother wanted a note to excuse her from P.E. Nope! That’s the opposite from the desired outcome. My goal is to give medications so she IS a normal, active kid.
Asthma causes symptoms like coughing, shortness of breath, and wheezing. Commonly exercise brings on these symptoms. Studies show only 23% of kids routinely took their albuterol inhaler before exercise. Adolescents are most likely to avoid activities because of exercise-related respiratory symptoms.
Asthma treatment can be used in a stair-stepped approach, adding medication as the patient’s symptoms require. If an albuterol “rescue” inhaler is used twice a week or less, no other medication is needed. A life-preserver at the pool is like an albuterol inhaler. If it’s needed more than twice a week, you need to learn to swim (or help your lungs in a different way). An inhaler with different properties should be added daily, not just when needed. In addition, if environmental allergies are a trigger, then a daily antihistamine should be used.
You and your physician can make up an asthma action plan. A peak flow meter (breathing into a special tube at home) used daily gives you a lung volume number. This helps gauge lung capacity, before wheezing or other symptoms start. Check out an action plan. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/lung/asthma/asthma_actplan.pdf
Hope this helps.