Need Advice on Treating One Year Old with Asthma

Updated on May 17, 2009
J.L. asks from Washington, DC
15 answers

My one year old was just diagnosed with asthma. I'm not totally convinced it is full blown asthma though. He is so robust usually and has been in daycare and been around a dog. Is there a chance he is just allergic to environmental pollutants? We were outside couple of days ago when the pollen was heavy and the wind was really blowing and he started sneezing and coughing. It continued to the night. Doctor has prescribed nebulizer and albuterol. Do any moms out there have natural or holistic remedies? thanks for any suggestions.

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So What Happened?

Thanks to all you moms out there. I will take the asthma diagnosis seriously and give him exactly the medicine prescribed. Also I will make changes in the household to limit allergens and take him to see an allergist. It has been a great help getting all this advice from experienced moms.

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K.S.

answers from Washington DC on

Sorry, I dont have any natural or hollistic advice. And Im no treally sure there are any. Since asthma affects the lungs and breathing, I dont think any techniques or herbs or anything else will help except meds. At least Ive never heard of any.
I felt the same way you do when they dx'd my dd w/ asthma. I said NO Way. I dx'd her w/ allergy induced asthma. I think I made up the name by observation of her symptoms and conditions under which they occurred. And given the fact there was no known history of it in our family. So after several years of fighting the doctors about this they have now officially labeled it allergy induced asthma as well. Hers is brought on in the spring and fall. She gets allergy symptoms and then a cold and then the asthma kicks in and then bronchitis. She gets pretty sick. So treatment for her begins in early pre-spring w/ allergy pills and singulair which has some asthma prevention. If she gets into the cold stage we immediately start the inhaler(s). At the first sign. Dont 2nd guess it. She does pretty well if we catch it in time. She did have a few years where she was doing the inhalers year round. But now at age 11 she has only used her inhaler as needed after physical activity...
So, your child could have the same thing, just allergys and if you let it go he could develope asthmatic symptoms making it hard to breathe. Ask your doctor to test him and also ask for allergy meds to see if that wards off the asthmatic symptoms. My daughter tested negative for allergys, but clearly suffers from them. So I am not sure how accurate they are.
I hope this information helps you figure it all out.

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A.F.

answers from Washington DC on

asthma is an allergy symptom. Your son is allergic to airborn particles. Sounds like pollen is one of them. You could take him to an allergy doctor to discover what else bothers him. Common allergens are dust, pet hair, and outdoor air pollutants. Limiting his exposure to allergens is your first step. I'm sure there are natural remedies that can help. The allergy doctor or a holistic doctor could give you advice. AF

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L.Z.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi J.,
Take it from a mom who has had her 3 1/2 daughter in picu and in the hospital 3 different times for asthma, it is no joke. Not saying that you think it is. But my daughters lungs have collasped and I think that at this young age, the albuterol and nebulizer are the best medicine. I have heard that a steamy shower and hot coffee work, but haven't tried it because when my daughter has attacks they go from A-D in a very short period. When your child is coughing, that is when if not of way before that they need to be on the nebulizer and inhaler. Take advantage of medical science. I know it does keep them up and make them more hyper, but it is worth it. Good luck, L.

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M.H.

answers from Washington DC on

Hello, I use holistic and natural products, I also had asthma. I suggest you start with his diet, which should consist mainly of fresh vegetabes and meat purchased in an unprocessed state. No Dairy products..if you are worried about calcium,use rice milk or almond milk, or rice and almond cheese, My thought; If your body is not getting enough calcium what is depleting it? Eat fruit;only green apples and berries (strawberries,blueberries,rasberries)also, eat fruit alone, not with meals.. Asthma is a common sign of yeast overgrowth in the intestinal tract. Yeast loves sugar, just a tiny amount will feed yeast and spread like the fungus that it is..When buying food read the ingredients, anything with sugar,fruitcose,or any word ending in "cose" is sugar and is bad for the body...READ, READ, and READ, about Candida Yeast, and about your food sources and where they come from..It is possible for your child to live drug free and healthy. I also suggest you find Drs. that are intergraded in Medical and Holistic training...It starts with food, light , and sleep.... good luck...MH

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N.B.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi, J., A friend of mine has 3 asthmatic sons. She got all the chemicals out of their home, and they have not used inhalers in 3 years! You are so smart to explore natural alternatives. Good luck.

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C.C.

answers from Washington DC on

J.

Please Please Please be careful with an asthma diagnosis.

Some background on me . . . I'm a full time working mom with five kids. I am no June Cleaver. I barely have it together. My house is an absolute zoo.

But I take asthma very seriously.

My daughter was diagnosed with asthma at 20 months. We were not educated at the time on what triggers asthma and how to deal with it appropriately. The military hospital we went to was not very proactive about helping us understand what we were dealing with. She was classified as mild persistent, so it seemed like she was not really a high risk. Because of that, we did not take it very seriously and were hesitant to give her the asthma medicine, afraid of overmedicating her. Every Fall and Spring, she was in the emergency room multiple times, sometimes followed by several days in the hospital. Finally, when she was 4 yrs old, she had a severe asthma attack at home, and ended up unconscious. I called 911. It was the longest 10 minutes of my life, holding my unconscious, barely breathing child, and waiting for that ambulance. I was so afraid of losing her. We ended up at MW Hospital and my daughter was diagnosed with pneumonia. The folks at MW did an awesome job with her, and sent in an asthma educator to explain to me what was going on with my daughter. I am still coming to grips with the fact that my daughter probably would have died that day if we had not gotten her medical treatment. We had always been given the impression from the military hospital that her asthma wasn't that serious.

We ended up switching to civilian doctors after that, took her to an allergy/asthma specialist and had her tested for allergies. We found out exactly what triggered the attacks (mold, dust mites, dogs, cats) and took steps at home to reduce her exposure to these allergens (we kept our dogs and cat, but limited their access to certain parts of the house, bought a high-quality air filter to clean the air, dust-proofed her bedroom, etc.). We began to be more vigilant about giving her the medication exactly as the doctor prescribed, and treating her at the first onset of symptoms. We started her on allergy shots to help her build up immunity to the allergens. Now when my daughter starts to cough or complain that her throat hurts (tightening of the airways), I move fast and put her on the meds.

It has all worked. We have not been to the emergency room for 18 months.

I recommend educating yourself - checking out some books at the library about asthma in children.

Also, take a look at the Allergy & Asthma Network - Mothers of Asthmatics. Their website is extremely helpful: http://www.aanma.org/. You can even sign up for their newsletter.

I hope I don't sound too alarmist here, but I don't want anyone to make the same mistakes that I did.

Best of luck to you and your son.

C.

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E.K.

answers from Washington DC on

While I would always treat an asthma diagnosis as serious, having been hospitalized for an attack, there are things that you can do to limit attacks and medicines that you don't like. USE THE MEDICINES when needed, it means the difference between life and death for some people. I also have a son who was diagnosed with asthma at about 6, he used an inhaler for one summer and fall period, and not since.

The reasons are because I removed all of the toxic chemicals from my house and use natural, safe products. My youngest, then 3, actually drank some of the laundry detergent, and all she got was hic-cup induced bubbles. Did you know that there are more chemicals in today's houses than were in a WELL stocked chemistry lab at the turn of the last century.

I also put filters all around the house, for the water, to get the chemicals out of there also. A nice hot shower feels good and sounds great, but produces many unwanted gases, like chlorine gas. I get air filters, for the vents and the main air exchanger, as well as water filters for the sinks and showers, at the local Lowe's. There are also whole home water filters too. Just don't forget to change the filters in the heating/AC system every 3 months, more if you have cats or dogs.

I also started myself and my entire family on vitamins to help our bodies be more able to fend off allergy attacks and illness. Wow what a difference! We can tell when we missed our vitamins for the day. Even if you eat according to the food pyramid, you will not get all of the nutrition that your body needs, because of depleted soil; for example- the amount of vitamins and minerals that our parents ate in the 40's and 50's from green leafy veggies (lettuce and spinach) would mean that we would have to eat more than 10 servings of the same foods to get the same benefit.
Check out these websites: www.concernedmoms.com and www.melaleuca.com

Don't forget about the food that you eat, I buy fruits and veggies that we eat the skin, or are thin skinned, from local markets or the organic section of the store. You would be surprised at how many "allergic reactions" are actually food based sensitivites.

I use the Melaleuca cleaning products and proven vitamins at my house, if you have any questions, e-mail me @ [email protected]____.com

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M.C.

answers from Washington DC on

My 8 yr old has asthma, and I have asthma. Some things that can help prevent an attack or be used during and attack, but should not be sole substitutes for medication: Nightly baths; keep windows closed; vaccuum carpets often; saline nasal flushes.

The nebulizer \ albuterol really is your best bet at this age. Also, the frequency of use is key to helping your child. I can understand the desire to not use medication when a natural option is available, but please remember that asthma is a very serious, life-threatening condition. We are talking about your child ability to breathe. Its not like an earache where waiting to get treatment for a few minutes isn't too harmful. With asthma, failure to receive quick treatment can cause permanent brain damage and death. I am not being overly dramatic when I say that. I have cerebral palsy do to lack of oxygen brain damage, and I know of a child that died during an attack. Please take this seriously.
M.

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C.I.

answers from Washington DC on

HI J.... Man are you having fun trying to get your 1 year old on a nebulizer? Yuk! I have asthma that my doctor dubbed "allergy induced asthma" but just because it is OFTEN (not always) caused by allergies doesn't make it less of asthma or less traumatic. Asthma really isn't something that they can misdiagnose, so for sure take it seriously. Just make sure that WHATEVER you're trying to reduce his albuterol need you still have it on hand all the time. They just diagnosed my son this week, so I'm guessing his is allergy induced too. --- Be sure to wash his face every time he comes in from outside, this will help. And just a heads up my asthma has been very very mild my whole life, but when I got pregnant a life-threatening attack snuck up on me, that changed my attitude a lot. So don't get complacent with it either. Good luck, God bless!

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S.G.

answers from Lynchburg on

At that age, there is a lot you can do naturally. My family consults with Dr. Ray Strand, M.D.; he is a specialist in nutritional medicine. I have a son with asthma, and with recommendations from Dr. Strand on vitamins, my son has been inhaler free. That said, you should ALWAYS have a rescue inhaler on hand, because asthma is very serious.

Dr. Strand's website is http://www.raystrand.com/

If you would like to get set up to consult with him, let me know. I already have an account.

S. SAHM of 4, ages 8 and 1/2, 5, 3 and 1/2, and 19 mos

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K.B.

answers from Richmond on

Hi J.,
My son was very sick when he was a baby and wheezed for 3 months. They "say" he has asthma as well. He is almost 7 now and has NEVER had an asthma attack. He has taken Singular since he was 2. It treats allergies as well as asthma. I know you were looking for a natural remedy but just thought I'd let you know about us! Good luck!

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J.W.

answers from Washington DC on

Have you taken him to an allergist? My DS had similar experiences and we went to the allergist. There he was tested for MANY different allergens. We found out that he is allergic to grasses and trees, so you can imagine during high pollen time how tough it is on him. With some allergy medicine he is able to enjoy time outside, but we do have the nebulizer as a backup for really rough days.

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K.A.

answers from Washington DC on

I have 2 children with asthma and I have found that eliminating dairy from there diets helps alot with there wheezing and their allergies. Most people don't realize that asthma and allergies go hand in hand. The dog at daycare may also play a part in the whole picture but to determine that you would have to get your doctor to do allergy testing on the baby.

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M.H.

answers from Washington DC on

I don't know of any natural remedies, but my son see's Dr. Osborn and The Pediatric Lung Center. He is FANTASTIC...and is not a "medicine pusher." I don't have the number off-hand, but you can easily find it. He as an office in Fairfax and Lansdowne. Hope this helps!

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M.B.

answers from Washington DC on

I'm glad you are looking in to natural and holistic remedies as I've found the are very effective, not to mention safe. Asthma is due to an overactive immune system, so the question is why and what to do about it, not just controlling the symptoms through medication. I am a chiropractor and my focus is natural means to obtain (or keep) health. During my years of practice, I've found that it is very difficult to say one thing (or things) work for a specific diagnosis. Instead I've realized that each patient is different, with a different body that needs to be taken into consideration. There are ways to test this to determine what each specific person needs to get healthier (from whatever problem the may suffer from). It is very accurate and so is not just effective, but saves time and money that would be spend searching for the correct remedy. I would be willing to do a free exam and consultation for you little guy with of course no obligation for anything. My goal is to get the world healthier through natural means so if you just have questions you want to ask, feel free to do that as well. [email protected]____.com ###-###-####

Good luck with whatever you choose to do, like I said you can go the natural route and find what you are looking for. Take care!

M. Bunker, DC

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