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Help your Child Breathe Easy this Summer

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Summertime can be one of the most anticipated and fun times of year. School is out and it is time to do all the things your kids have been waiting for: family vacations, summer camps, meeting new friends and even relaxing by the pool.

However, when your child has asthma, it is important to remember to take some important steps to prevent asthma from interfering with his or her summer fun. The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology recommends the following quick and easy steps to ensure your child's summer vacation is full of fun:

Make sure your child has plenty of asthma medications and refills readily available. Quick-relief medication should always be on-hand – and your child should take controller medications (if prescribed) every day. If asthma is exercise-induced, be sure to pre-treat with a rescue inhaler 15-20 minutes prior to physical activity.

Also be sure your child takes an Asthma Action Plan everywhere he or she goes. Whenever signs and symptoms occur, your child should know to refer to the Asthma Action Plan and monitor his or her asthma through use of a peak flow meter. Ensure the Asthma Action Plan is up to date and leave a copy with your child's caretakers if they are attending summer camp or visiting relatives and friends.

Kids should know their asthma triggers and ways to avoid them. When on vacation, remember that different environments can expose your child to different triggers. Parents should plan ahead and research potential triggers while on vacation. If traveling by car, keeping the windows up and avoiding traveling mid-day can help to reduce outdoor pollen and pollution.

Most of all, kids should enjoy the sun, have some fun and take care of themselves!

For more information, contact the Seton Asthma Center at (512) 324-3320.

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Good Health for Kids is produced by Dell Children's Medical Center of Central Texas.