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Do Children Grow Out of Asthma?

written by: Jennifer Gonzalez • edited by: Diana Cooper • updated: 2/27/2011

Finding out that your child has asthma is hard for any parent to hear. Although they have this condition, there is hope for them on the other side. If your child has asthma, find out how the condition will affect them as they grow, and if it will follow them though their adult years.

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    Childhood Asthma

    All across the United States children are being diagnosed with different types of asthma. This is a condition that is currently topping the charts as being the number one chronic condition developing in children of all ages. From infants to preteenagers to young adults, over five million children have been diagnosed, and that number is currently growing. Hearing that your child has been diagnosed with asthma can be a heartbreaking moment in a parent’s life as well as the child. Asthma is a very serious health condition that if not properly treated can result in the loss of life, but being diagnosed with it does not mean that a child’s life is over. Children with asthma live normal and active life’s each and every day. With asthma, it's all about getting it under control and being able to keep it under control. Once you find out that your child has this condition you will probably have tons of questions flooding your head; and one question that I am sure every parent of an asthmatic child will ask is, "Do children outgrow asthma?" This is a great question that has a very simple answer. That answer is, yes.

    Although no one wants their child to have any form of illness, if a child is going to have asthma, being diagnosed with it in the younger stages of life is not necessarily a bad thing. While a child is growing, their systems are constantly changing and progressing. This means that certain things that they had a problem with at one time in their life, they may not have at another time in their life down the road. The same is to be said with asthma. More children outgrow asthma when diagnosed during childhood than those that are diagnosed later on in life. Studies have shown that out of the number of children diagnosed with asthma during their childhood, only about two percent actually carry that asthma on to their adult stages of life. Those that do not outgrow it normally had a very severe case, or they had what is known as allergy related asthma, which is asthma that has triggers brought on by different allergens such as dust, pollen, or pet dander, or they had a form of exercise induced asthma which is brought on by being very active.

    As the child grows older and the symptoms of asthma begin to disappear, you should still keep your regular appointments with your child’s doctor. Even though the childhood asthma may vanish, there are chances that it may reappear later on in the child’s life. To avoid this, teach the child about asthma treatment and what their personal asthma triggers are so they can help themselves as they grow and move on in life on their own. Even after asthma has cleared up, it’s a great idea to continue to avoid the things that at one time caused the person to have an asthma attack.

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    How Do I Know if My Child Has Asthma?

    A child with asthma may show different signs or symptoms. A few typical signs that a child may have developed asthma are:

    • Wheezing
    • Chronic cough that is sometimes worsened at night (this is one of the telltale signs for doctors that a child may have asthma)
    • Shortness of breath
    • Tightening of the chest

    If you think that your child may have asthma you need to make an appointment to speak with a doctor right away. Asthma that is left untreated can cause damage to the child’s lungs, and will run the risk of the child having a serious asthma attack. Keep your child on all medications prescribed by the doctor, and be sure to give them to the child as prescribed for the best possible control and prevention of the symptoms.

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    References

    Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America: http://www.aafa.org/display.cfm?id=8&sub=16&cont=44

    Mayo Clinic-Asthma: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/asthma/DS00021/DSECTION=symptoms