Sneezing, wheezing, coughing, and misery associated with asthma and allergies can disrupt your child’s learning. They may miss a lot of days due to these symptoms and even if they do make it in, may have trouble concentrating due to feeling poorly.
At Primary Care Walk, we want to help you and your child manage their symptoms so they experience quality learning and comfort each and every day. Follow these tips to support your child and keep their allergy and asthma under control.
Seek school support
Discuss your child’s triggers with the school nurse at the beginning of the school year. Request that the teachers and staff be aware of high pollen days and keep windows closed to prevent your child from exposure to allergens. Ask whether tasks that stir up allergens, such as lawn mowing, occur during school hours. If it’s a high-pollen day, suggest that an indoor recess alternative be provided for sensitive kids.
Carrying medications at school is usually not permitted, but exceptions can be made for asthma inhalers. Find out your school’s policies so your child can self-administer an inhaler when they feel it’s necessary. Waiting for a nurse to give them their inhaler could miss their treatment window and cause a severe reaction.
Make a plan that teachers, the school nurse, and administrators can follow in case your child has a reaction – especially if that reaction is a severe asthma attack or anaphylaxis.
Put the power in your kid’s hands
Make your child aware of their triggers so they can avoid them successfully and avoid a flare-up. Give them permission to head to the nurse’s office if they feel symptoms or an attack coming on. Remind them to sit farther away from the chalkboard (and to remind their teachers that they should) and to wash their hands often.
Outfit them with a medical ID bracelet that reminds the school about your child’s condition. It quickly reminds school staff that your child may need epinephrine without them having to waste time reviewing their file.
Help everyone manage triggers
Food and insect bites are common allergies that can cause a serious reaction. You can help your child avoid them while at school with a few precautions.
If your child has food allergies, pack their lunch, and teach them not to share utensils, napkins, and plates. Many schools have special tables and classrooms that exclude any common food allergy triggers, such as peanuts. Ask the staff about these and how your child can take advantage of them.
If your child is allergic to bee stings or other insects, teach them safe practices, which includes avoiding areas where insects gather. Don’t dress them in brightly colored clothing on the playground, as this attracts bees and wasps. Inform the school nurse about your child’s
allergy and provide them with epinephrine to be used if your child is stung.
These simple precautions can help avoid an emergency asthma attack or severe allergic reaction. But should your child need urgent attention due to allergies, call Primary Care Walk, or just come in for immediate treatment.