Skip to content

Asthma Health Center

Font Size

Asthma in Children - Treatment Overview

Know what to do if asthma gets worse continued...

If your child's medicine is not working to control airway inflammation, your doctor will first check to see whether your child is using the inhaler correctly. If your child is using it correctly, your doctor may increase the dosage, switch to another medicine, or add a medicine to the existing treatment.

If your child's asthma does not improve with treatment, he or she may require more treatment, including larger doses of medicines. An asthma specialist typically prescribes these medicines.

Plan for emergencies

If your child has a severe asthma attack (the red zone of the asthma action plan), give him or her medicine based on the action plan. Talk with a doctor right away about what to do next. This is especially important if your child's peak expiratory flow (PEF) does not return to the green zone or stays within the yellow zone after he or she takes medicine.

Your child may have to go to the emergency room for treatment.

At the hospital, your child will probably receive inhaled beta2-agonists and steroid medicines. He or she may be given oxygen therapy. Doctors will assess your child's lung function and condition. Depending on the response, further treatment in the emergency room or a stay in the hospital may be needed.

This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: January 24, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
Next Article:

When Is Your Asthma Worse?

When Is Your Asthma Worse?

Take the WebMD Asthma assessment to get Personalized Action Plan

Start Now

Today on WebMD

Lung and bronchial tube graphic
5 common triggers.
group jogging in park
Should you avoid fitness activities?
asthma inhaler
Learn about your options.
man feeling faint
What’s the difference?
Madison Wisconsin Capitol
woman wearing cpap mask
red wine pouring into glass
Woman holding inhaler

Pollen counts, treatment tips, and more.

It's nothing to sneeze at.

Loading ...

Sending your email...

This feature is temporarily unavailable. Please try again later.


Now check your email account on your mobile phone to download your new app.

Man outdoors coughing
Lung and bronchial tube graphic
10 Worst Asthma Cities

WebMD Special Sections