As half term hits and hundreds of children head for the outdoors, parents and carers are being asked to keep an eye on their little ones if they have asthma.
One in 11 children has asthma and it is the most common long-term medical condition. And children under the age of five account for the highest number of attendances to A&E. In reality a child is admitted to hospital every 20 minutes because of an asthma attack.
Cold weather is a major trigger for asthma symptoms but a few simple precautions can avoid a child being admitted to hospital.
Dr Donald Mcgeachy, Medical Director of mid Essex Clinical Commissioning Group said: “Hospital admissions for asthma traditionally peak during periods of particularly cold weather. This can be due to breathing cold air into the lungs which can in turn trigger asthma.
“Risks also increase as children with asthma pick up colds and flu which circulate more during the winter months.
“Children whose asthma is well-controlled are more likely to be able to withstand the risks of winter and avoid having to spend any time in hospital.”
Tips on keeping asthma under control include making sure your child has a regular asthma review with your doctor or asthma nurse. If prescribed, taking regular preventer medicine is vital.
If you or your child feels unwell visit your pharmacist or call NHS 111. For more information on staying well this winter visit NHS Choices Stay Well.