Additional support for managing your child’s asthma

 

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Information for parents, carers and patients and schools

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The information on this page is to help you manage you/your child’s asthma.

How to contact our service

Children’s Community Nursing Team
The Poynt 2-4 Poynters Road Luton. LU4 0LA

Tel: 0333 405 0079

Email: cypluton.asthma@nhs.net (non-urgent queries)

 

When I have an asthma attack

I’m having an asthma attack if:Faizah Younas

  • My blue reliever inhaler isn’t helping, or
  • I can’t walk or talk easily, or I’m breathing hard and fast, or
  • I’m coughing or wheezing a lot.

When I have an asthma attack, I should:

  • Sit up – don’t lie down. Try to be calm.
  • Take my blue inhaler and have
  • 10 puffs; (via a spacer).
  • If i still don’t feel better and I’ve taken 10 puffs.

I need to call 999 straight away. If I am waiting longer than 15 minutes for an ambulance I should take another one puff every minute of my blue inhaler; via a spacer.


Common Triggers (advise for Parents, Carers and Patients)

  • Aerosols – Please avoid using aerosols around your child
  • Animal Dander – Avoid our furry friends as much as possible, if not possible please ensure that you have an anti-histamine e.g. Piriton®, salbutamol (blue inhaler) and spacer available at all times.
  • Cigarette Smoke – Smoking permanently damages the airways; this includes second hand smoke. Please do not smoke cigarettes around your child and remember that the harmful chemicals cling to clothing and skin for at least 2 hours after smoking.
  • Chemicals (bleach, chlorine, paint etc.) – ensure good ventilation if using chemicals
  • Cold Drinks – avoid cold drinks
  • Cold Food – avoid cold foods
  • Cold Weather – Encourage your child to loosely wrap a scarf around their mouth and nose prior to going outside; trapping in warm air. For local weather forecasts please visit www.metoffice.gov.
  • Coughs and Colds – At the start of a cough or cold give your child 2 puffs of salbutamol (blue inhaler), via their spacer, 15 minutes prior to their preventer (brown, orange, purple or red and white inhaler). Please refer to your asthma plan for further management and guidance.
    Please remember to have your annual flu immunisation (if able to) and take childhood, over the counter, multi-vitamins that contain vitamin d and calcium. Vitamin D has been shown to help prevent against cold and flu and also aides better absorption of preventer inhalers.
  • Dust – Wash your sheets and other bedding once a week in hot water. Remove wall-to-wall carpeting if you can, if unable to, try to vacuum daily. Get rid of areas where dust can gather, like heavy curtains, upholstered furniture, and piles of clothing. If your child has allergic asthma, only buy washable stuffed animals and place them in a freezer once a month for 24 hours. Avoid using aerosols to clean dust as this will spray dust into the air; use a wet cloth to remove dust.
  • Dust/House Dust Mites – Wash your sheets and other bedding once a week in hot water. Remove wall-to-wall carpeting if you can, if unable to, try to vacuum daily. Get rid of areas where dust can gather, like heavy curtains, upholstered furniture, and piles of clothing. If your child has allergic asthma, only buy washable stuffed animals and place them in a freezer once a month for 24 hours. Avoid using aerosols to clean dust as this will spray dust into the air; use a wet cloth to remove dust.
  • Exercise – Please have 2 puffs of salbutamol (blue inhaler), via a spacer, 15 minutes prior to participating. Please note that exercise is very helpful to people with Asthma (Just ask Laura Kenny)! When wheezy, gentle aerobic exercise, such as walking, can help improve symptoms.
  • Fizzy Drinks – avoid fizzy drinks.
  • Food Allergies – Please refer to your food allergy plan, ensure that your auto-adrenaline injector pen, salbutamol (blue inhaler) and spacer are quickly and easily available at all times.
  • Hot Weather – Ensure your child maintains good hydration, avoid exercising outside during hot weather. For local weather forecasts please visit www.metoffice.gov.
  • Mould (indoor and outdoor) – wipe indoor mould away with a bleach solution, ensure good ventilation in areas prone to mould (bathroom or kitchen).
  • Physical Expression of Strong Feelings (Anger, anxiety, crying, laughing, upset) – This a RED FLAG trigger. Please make sure that your child’s salbutamol (blue inhaler) and spacer are available at all times.
  • Pollution – Consider purchasing a mask for your child. www.cambridgemask.com has some fun pollution masks. Also check www.uk-air.defra.gov.uk for regular pollution level updates.
  • Pollen – At the start of symptoms start regular antihistamine such as Cetirizine. Shower each night and wash hair to wash away the pollen. Avoid dry clothes and bedding outside but if unavoidable give them a good shake just before bringing inside. Wipe some Vaseline® around the nose prior to going outside to trap pollen (PLEASE BE AWARE THAT VASELINE® IS HIGHLY FLAMMABLE). To check local pollen levels please visit: www.metoffice.gov.
  • Scented Products (aftershave, perfume) – Avoid using around your child.
  • Vaping – More research is currently taking place regarding vaping. Although Public Health England has advised that vaping is 95% safer than smoking. However it is strongly recommended to not vape around children.


Common Triggers (additional advice for schools): Helping you manage your pupil’s asthma.

  • Aerosols – Please avoid using aerosols around your pupil.
  • Chemicals (bleach, chlorine, paint etc.) – ensure good ventilation if using chemicals
  • Cold Drinks – avoid cold drinks
  • Cold Food – avoid cold foods
  • Cold Weather – Encourage your pupil to loosely wrap a scarf around their mouth and nose prior to going outside; trapping in warm air. For local weather forecasts please visit www.metoffice.gov
  • Exercise – Please have 2 puffs of salbutamol (blue inhaler), via a spacer, 15 minutes prior to participating. Please note that exercise is very helpful to people with Asthma (Just ask Laura

    Kenny)! When wheezy, gentle aerobic exercise, such as walking, can help improve symptoms

If you would like asthma training for staff, please contact the team on the contact details above.

Please ensure that all pupils have quick and easy access to their salbutamol (blue inhaler) and spacer at all times.

Ensure that everyone who teaches them are aware of their asthma plan.


How to give an Inhaler via a Spacer

  1. Please ensure that your child is sitting up – especially if they are having an asthma attack.Young girl using an inhaler via a spacer
  2. Place the spacer end into the child’s mouth/mask over mouth and nose and ensure there is a good seal around the mouth and nose. Ask your child to breathe normally in and out. If a whistling sound is heard your child is breathing to hard and/or to quick.
  3. Shake the inhaler to mix the medication and aerosol (aerosol is heavier than the medication; if you do not shake before taking you will only get aerosol).
  4. Place the inhaler into the back of the spacer and press down the canister once.
  5. Ask your child to breathe normally for a count of 10.
  6. Remove the spacer from the child’s mouth.
  7. If further doses’ are required please repeat steps 2-6.
  8. Place the dust cap back on the inhaler.

Click on the link to download an information leaflet on how to use an Clean Spacer Leaflet.

Why use a spacer with an inhaler - image


Additional links and information

 Asthma UK: works to stop asthma attacks and, ultimately, cure asthma by funding world leading research, and supporting people with asthma to reduce their risk. www.asthma.org.uk

ChatHealth: A text messaging service providing young people aged 11—19 with quick and easy access to confidential health advice. Text: 07520 616070 www.cambscommunityservices.nhs.uk/luton/chathealth

Healthy London Partnership: Giving all London’s children a healthy, happy start to life.
www.healthylondon.org/resource/london-asthma-toolkit/

Iggy and the Inhaler: asthma education for children. https://iggyandtheinhalers.com/

Itchysneezywheezy: everything you need to know about allergies. https://www.itchysneezywheezy.co.uk/

Luton Food Bank: run for the benefit of people in and around Luton who need emergency food. www.lutonfoodbank.org.uk/

Monkey Wellbeing: a website taking children through some of life’s new and often challenging experiences, reassuring and comforting them by showing them what to expect. www.monkeywellbeing.com

The Uniform Exchange Programme: offering free school uniform and emotional and practical support to all Luton families. www.themall.co.uk/luton/store-a-z/level-trust

TOKKO Youth Space: supporting young people and provides a safe space with passionate staff who are always willing to help when you need it. www.tokko.co.uk

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