Your Child’s Asthma Care: Build a Team

Your Child’s Asthma Care: Build a Team

They say it takes a village to raise a child. When the child has asthma, it takes a “village” of health experts. This health team will help your child manage their symptoms and live a normal, active life.

Good communication with your child’s asthma care team is very important because asthma is often a complex, ongoing challenge. You’ll rely on these individuals to help you and your child manage symptoms, avoid triggers and map out a treatment plan.

Your child’s asthma care team will have several individuals, including a:

  • Pediatrician. Whether this individual is a doctor or a nurse practitioner, they will diagnose your child’s illness, outline treatment and create an asthma action plan. They’ll also refer you to other professionals, as needed.
  • Nurse or asthma educator. Your child’s doctor may refer you to a trained educator who will teach you how to deal with your child’s asthma.
  • Pharmacist. Well-versed on the tools used to keep asthma under control, a pharmacist can teach your child how to use inhaler medicines, peak-flow meters and other equipment. They will also let you know about the possible side effects of medications and when to call the doctor.
  • Allergist. When asthma is triggered by allergens, an allergist can help you identify the culprits so they can be avoided and symptoms can be better managed.
  • Family. Your loved ones can support you. They can help your child avoid asthma triggers. Some family members may even be trained to respond to a severe asthma attack.
  • School. leaving site icon Provide your child’s teachers with a copy of his or her asthma action plan. When the plan is carried out, kids can stay healthy, learn better and participate fully during their school day.
  • You. It’s up to you to communicate with everyone on your child’s team, so they can make decisions based on the most up-to-date information.

While asthma is the most common long-term disease in children, it can affect people for their entire lives. Putting together a health care team now will help your child learn to manage asthma through adulthood.

Sources: Asthma, leaving site icon National Institutes of Health, 2022; Asthma-Friendly Schools Initiative Toolkit, leaving site icon American Lung Association, 2022

Originally published 9/2/2016; Revised 2021, 2023