Did you know?
More than 8% of children in the US have asthma.
Asthma is a medical condition in which your airways get narrow, swell, and produce more amount of mucus. It causes recurring wheezing, coughing, chest tightness, and shortness in breath. The risk of asthma can be reduced by exposing kids to pets.
According to a recent study published by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), “Children exposed to pet or pest allergens at the younger age has a lower risk of developing asthma.” Findings from the Urban Environment and Childhood Asthma (URECA) study suggested that exposure to certain allergens and bacteria early in life, before asthma develops, may protect children from wheezing, a precursor of asthma, at age 3.
Some more studies show kids living on farms have asthma rate by half. Bringing a dog in your home in baby’s first year can lower the risk of asthma by 13%.
This means raising a baby in a household with a dog not just create a bond of love and companionship but also reduces the risk of asthma. Some health experts also suggest that early exposure to cats may offer some protection from developing allergies and asthma.
Some other tips to prevent asthma in kids
- Breastfeed your kids for at least 4-6 months to strengthen their immune system, helps to prevent lung infections such as asthma.
- Don’t smoke or allow anyone else to smoke in your home. Smoking during pregnancy increases the risk of your baby wheezing during infancy. And continued exposure to secondhand smoke directly increase the risk of asthma and other respiratory illnesses in kids.
- Reduce your kids’ exposure to common allergens such as dust mites.
- Use zippered covers on pillows and mattresses. Wash them in hot water once a week. Make sure that humidity in your household is less than 50%.
- Avoid keeping carpets and upholstered furniture in your kid’s room. These are the common places where mites hide.
Is asthma curable?
There is no cure for asthma but it’s highly treatable. Asthma treatments are so effective that many people have nearly complete control on their symptoms. Having asthma has its causes, risks, and treatments.
If you’ve asthma, consult your healthcare provider. Your doctor may recommend you to follow an asthma action plan that completely focuses on your asthma symptoms and the factor that triggers your asthma issue. The plan includes changes in your lifestyle, environment, and daily habits, along with medications to help you overcome your symptoms.
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