My 6 yr old is currently on FLovent, she's been on it for several years now. I have not noticed any side affects of it like there is with Albuterol but I don't use it as directed. Just like you I have my concerns about giving her a steroid twice daily, just for fear of potential issues.
I had this discussion with her pediatrician and we decided that since I know when her peak asthma triggers are ( change of seasons, if she catches a cold, extreme weather conditions) I give her the Flovent during those times to prevent attacks; otherwise I do not administer the drug. It has been working well for her but I HAVE to be carefull because the attacks are worse without the Flovent in her system.
I would suggest that you talk with the pediatrician to see if you could reduce the dosage without affecting her treatment. Good Luck!