Tips for Back-to- School when your Child has Asthma and Allergies

August 1, 2016

It’s that time of the year again, children of all ages are preparing to go back to school. Children are not the only individuals preparing, many parents of allergic children are preparing too. The back-to- school season is a time of high pollen and mold levels, and exposure to both (and additional) allergens and viruses at school can take a large toll on children’s health. Asthma, triggered in large part by allergies and respiratory illnesses, accounts for a 46 percent increase in emergency room visits among children during the fall, Medical News Today reports. The Allergy Asthma Clinic has prepared a short list of tips to help parents and children stay healthy and avoid missing school this year!

1. Schedule a back-to- school checkup with the Allergy Asthma Clinic to make sure your child’s allergy and asthma symptoms are under control. If you’ve never taken your child to an allergist, now is the perfect time to schedule an appointment with us today. Through allergy testing and spirometry, we can determine the extent of your child’s allergies and asthma and develop a treatment plan.

2. Communicate your child’s treatment plan with school staff. This should include a list of allergens that trigger your child’s allergy or asthma symptoms, medications, and emergency contact information. It’s always a good idea to meet with the school nurse, teachers, and coaches to ensure that they are familiar with your child's symptoms and treatment plan.

3. Protect your child against the flu through vaccinations, especially if he or she has asthma. The Allergy Asthma Clinic, LTD, has flu shots available in the fall for our patients. Call our office in the fall to see when we will start administering them.

4. Have a plan in place for emergencies. Children can keep inhalers with them at school with an allergist’s recommendation. In addition, those at risk of anaphylaxis should have their epinephrine auto injectors at the ready. Make sure both your child and school staff know how to use these emergency medications, and make sure that you’ve filled out a school action plan allowing staff to administer medications if they’re needed. Most schools have such an emergency action plan.

Asthma and allergies account for 10.5 million missed days of school annually across the United States. Being prepared will give you peace of mind when sending your child to school, and help them stay in school, keeping them on track with their education. If you believe your child’s asthma or allergies are not controlled, schedule an appointment with the Allergy Asthma Clinic today!

Bart Leyko