It’s asthma time
|01/07/2018||Posted by admin under 南京夜网||
Kiama Public School students Brodey Jelliffe (year 6), Sarah Moore (year 3) and Sinead O’Connor (year 4). Picture: GEORGIA MATTSSTUDENTS with asthma at Kiama Public School are able to breathe easier during the difficult back-to-school period.
The Asthma Foundation NSW has urged parents and carers of children with asthma to be aware of signs and symptoms, and familiarise themselves with asthma first aid for the dangerous back-to-school period.
Professor Dominic Fitzgerald, respiratory and sleep senior staff specialist, The Children’s Hospital at Westmead, said it was recognised that there was a spike in admissions to emergency departments when children go back to school after the summer holidays.
“We saw a dramatic increase in emergency admissions of children with asthma in February (last year)compared to January, which continued to peak up until May,” Professor Fitzgerald said.
“This is largely driven by infection due to kids being in close proximity with each other and meeting new friends with new viruses.’’
Asthma Foundation NSW chief executiveMichele Goldman said this was a trend the organisation saw annually.
‘‘It could also be other reasons that aren’t really understood,’’ she said.
Kiama Public’s learning support teacher Georgia Sellars said of the school’s 443 students, about 37 had been identified as having asthma, although not all were severe cases.
She said they hadn’t noticed a similar spike, but the school took preventative measures.
‘‘The ones classified as severe, they’re the ones with asthma action plans,’’ she said.
‘‘The parents need to get that done through their GP, and we have those on file.
‘‘The students have their puffers at the office, the teachers are trained, and they know who has severe asthma in the school.
‘‘All the staff are trained in the signs to look for, in terms of tightness in the chest, wheezing, bad coughing.
‘‘Often they’ve had it (their puffer) before they come to school, and they’ve got their puffer here if the need arises.’’
Year 6 student Brodey Jelliffe has asthma, and enjoys playing soccer.
‘‘I sometimes find it hard to breathe if I run too much,’’ he said.
‘‘I take a different kind of puffer in the morning and night-time.
‘‘If I forget sometimes I have an asthma attack in the morning if I don’t do that.’’
However, he said the precautions in place at the school made him feel safer.
Ms Goldman said asthma was quite a complex disease that was ‘‘still very much a mystery’’, with more research required.
However, she said there are a number of ways to make sure children stay well during this period, and encouraged the community to be extra vigilant in looking out for symptoms, and being quick to treat those symptoms.
“Parents should ensure their child’s asthma is reviewed by a GP before going back to school, … now is as good a time as any,” Ms Goldman said.
“During this period it is absolutely vital that children take their preventer medication regularly as prescribed, and carry reliever medication at all times if permitted.
“It’s also important you provide the school with the revised asthma action plan and to keep an eye out for asthma symptoms, including wheezing, shortness of breath, tightness in the chest, or persistent coughing.
‘‘Young children sometimes struggle to articulate when they’re having trouble breathing.’’
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