Imagine a young child competing with his or her fellow classmates during recess and immediately losing the ability to breathe normally. He or she stops in the middle of the competition and falls to the ground while holding his or her chest trying to find air. When you are young, being able to keep up with your peers during recess and sporting events is very important, however, having asthma restricts this. Asthma has a significant impact on childhood development and the diagnosis of asthma for children 18 years and younger has dramatically increased over the years. Asthma is known as a “chronic inflammation of the small and large airways” with “evident bronchial hyper-responsiveness, airflow obstruction, and in some patients, sub-basement fibrosis and over-secretion of mucus” (Toole, 2013). The constant recreation of the lung walls can even occur in young children and “lead to permanent lung damages and reduced lung function” (Toole, 2013). While one of the factors is genetics, many of the following can be prevented or managed. Obesity, exposure to secondhand smoke, and hospitalization with pneumonia in the early years of life have all been suggested to increase children’s risk of developing asthma.
The most common environmental, individual, and agent factors that increase the risk of this serious childhood health problem are obesity, exposure to secondhand smoke, and hospitalization with pneumonia. In the United States, “the prevalence of childhood asthma has increased from 3.5% in 1980 to 9.6% in 2009” and “according to a recent nationwide survey targeting 0-to 17-year-olds in the USA, nearly 25% and 13% were obese and diagnosed with asthma respectively” (Liu, Kieckhefer, & Gau, 2013). According to t...
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...n improve adherence to medication” (Toole, 2013). School-based interventions through an asthma program clearly show to be the most practical, cost-effective way to reach out to children with asthma and manage their condition.
Asthma is a serious respiratory condition that many children suffer from. The risk factor that should be addressed for this population is obesity. Addressing the need to keep children at an ideal weight is an easy way to reduce the chances of a child being diagnosed with asthma and managing their condition once diagnosed. I strongly believe that the schools should adopt an asthma program in order to reach out to children that suffer from asthma and who are not receiving proper care. These tertiary prevention programs can provide them with the appropriate education and maximize their quality of life throughout childhood into their adulthood.
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