Asthma and Sports

sports asthmaEven though it is winter, children need to get out, play, and participate in sports. We often see children who are having symptoms of exercise induced asthma during the winter because the cold and the exercise can both be triggers. Children with asthma should be able to fully participate in the sport of their choice without asthma exacerbations or other symptoms of their asthma impacting their endurance or performance. If you feel like your child is not able to keep up with their peers, it might be time for an asthma tune up. Or if you are concerned that your child might have exercise induced asthma (EIA), it might be time to have them evaluated. Sometimes it is hard to tell the difference between your child not being in shape and becoming short of breath and exercise induced asthma.

Symptoms of exercise induced asthma are:

  • shortness of breath on exertion that is not caused by being “out of shape” and takes longer than 10 minutes to recover
  • chest tightness that develops while exercising
  • a cough or wheeze that develops while exercising
  • sore throat
  • decrease endurance
  • stomach ache

If your child has been diagnosed or you suspect they have EIA, here are some suggestions to help relieve symptoms of EIA:

  • Warm up with low intensity exercises for about 15 minutes before you start more intense exercise.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a scarf or face mask when you exercise in cold weather.
  • Try to breathe through your nose while you exercise. This helps warm the air that goes into your lungs.
  • 2 puffs of their albuterol or rescue inhaler prior (15-20 minutes before) to practice or a game.

If they continue to have symptoms please call us and schedule an appointment. We might need to start your child on a daily medication to help prevent these symptoms.




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