Asthma in Children - Prevention
While there is no certain way to prevent
asthma, experts continue to look at things that may reduce a child's chance of getting asthma.
Irritants in the air
Common irritants in the air,
such as tobacco smoke and air pollution, can cause asthma symptoms in some
Controlling tobacco smoke is important because it is a
major cause of asthma symptoms in children and adults. If your child has
asthma, try to avoid being around others who are smoking. And ask people not to
smoke in your house.
- Pregnant women who smoke cigarettes during
pregnancy increase the risk for wheezing in their newborn
- Exposing young children to secondhand tobacco smoke makes
it more likely that the children will develop asthma and makes symptoms more
severe if the children already have the disease.
Consider keeping your child inside when air pollution
levels are high. Other irritants in the air (such as fumes from gas, oil, or
kerosene, or wood-burning stoves) can sometimes irritate the bronchial tubes.
Avoiding these may reduce asthma symptoms.
You may also want to use an air filter machine in your house to reduce the amount of dust and other pollutants.
No one is sure if
breast-feeding affects a child's risk of getting asthma. A large study following children until 14 years of age found
that breast-feeding was not linked to asthma.10 Mothers are encouraged to
breast-feed their children for all the other proven health benefits that come