The objective in managing asthma is to reduce the symptoms as well as allowing a child to engage in normal activities with minimal side effects.
Ideally, a child should not end up with any indications more than 1-2 times in a week, wake the child at night time more than two times in a month and must be able to engage in sports or other physical activities.
What are the types of asthma medications?
It is important to note that asthma varies in every child and the symptoms change over time. The doctor will determine the suitable asthma medications based on the frequency and severity of the symptoms and age of the child.
For children with occasional symptoms, they are given medications only for brief periods. As for those with more frequent symptoms, they require a controller medication based on the frequency and severity of the symptoms and their age.
Oftentimes, it is required to use several medications at the same time to control and prevent the symptoms. Asthma medications are categorized in 2 groups – rapid-relief and controller medications.
These works by opening the constricted airways and alleviate chest tightness, breathlessness and wheezing.
These are also used to prevent exercise-induced asthma. Remember that these should only be taken as needed.
The controller medications are used daily to manage asthma and reduce the occurrence of the symptoms. These are not utilized for relief of symptoms. Children with symptoms that manifest more than 2 times in a week or wake up more than 2 times in a month must be under controller medications.
The controller medications include:
- Inhaled steroids
- Leukotriene receptor antagonists (pill form)
- Combination variants containing inhaled steroids and long-acting bronchodilators
- Inhaled non-steroids
- Omalizumab injection
The inhaled corticosteroids are the favored controller medication for all ages. If utilized in the prescribed dosage, they are ideal for most children.
Disclaimer / More Information
The information posted on this page on commonly used medications for asthma is for learning and educational purposes only. To learn to manage respiratory emergencies including an asthma attack, register for first aid training at one of our training centers located throughout Canada. The training centers are in Edmonton, Calgary, Vancouver, Kelowna, Surrey, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa and Halifax.