Here’s a shocking stat: Nearly 10 percent of kids in the U.S. have asthma, making it one of the most common chronic disorders in childhood and is characterized by airway swelling in response to triggers like colds, smoke, dust, and exercise. Asthma can be life-threatening when not properly managed—but by taking a few smart, simple steps, you can protect your child.
Here’s 10 toddler asthma remedies from the Environmental Protection Agency.
- Take it outside. One of the most common asthma triggers in the home is secondhand smoke. Until you can quit, smoke outside, not in your home or car. It’s one of the simplest toddler asthma remedies of all.
- Good night, little mite! Dust mites are also triggers for asthma. For mite population control, cover your child’s mattresses and pillows with dust-proof (allergen impermeable) zippered covers. Wash sheets and blankets once a week in hot water.
- Play it safe. Ozone and particle pollution can cause trigger toddler asthma. Watch for the Air Quality Index (AQI) during your local weather report. When AQI reports unhealthy levels, limit outdoor activities.
- A little goes a long way. Reduce everyday dust build-up, by regularly dusting with a damp cloth and vacuuming carpet and fabric-covered furniture.
- Stake your claim. Household pets can trigger asthma with skin flakes, urine, and saliva. If your toddler has asthma, keep pets outdoors, if possible.
- Uninvite unwelcome guests. Cockroaches can trigger toddler asthma. Don’t invite them into your home by leaving food or garbage out. Always clean up messes and spills and store food in airtight containers.
- Think before you spray. Instead of pesticide sprays, control pests by using baits or traps. If sprays are necessary, always circulate fresh air into the room being treated and keep asthma sufferers out of that room for several hours after any spraying.
- Break the mold. Mold is another toddler asthma trigger. The key to controlling mold is controlling moisture. Wash and dry hard surfaces to prevent and remove mold. Replace moldy ceiling tiles and carpet.
- Air it out. Reducing the moisture will control asthma triggers like mold, cockroaches, and dust mites. Use exhaust fans or open windows when cooking and showering. Fix leaky plumbing or other unwanted sources of water.
- Plan before the attack. Work with your doctor or health care provider to develop a written asthma management plan for your child that includes information on your child’s triggers and how to manage them.
Stick the list on your fridge for easy reference, and share it with your toddler’s caregivers and teachers.