Asthma is a serious condition that requires careful management. When an asthma attack or flare-up occurs, a child’s airways become constricted. This makes breathing very difficult, especially if the attack leads to excess mucus production in the airways. Asthma generally occurs in school-age children, although it can also develop in infants and younger children as well. Since these attacks can be potentially life-threatening without proper treatment, having the most reliable Asthma Testing Columbus MS offers if crucial.
Part of successfully controlling asthma and reducing attacks involves determining what triggers them. The exact triggers that lead to these attacks differ for each child. Common ones include allergens, such as pollen, dust mites and mold. Exercise, colds and substances like cigarette smoke can also trigger attacks. Testing for these triggers can be tricky since the reactions can be so severe. Some doctors might perform these tests in older children who suffer from asthma. If this type of test is deemed safe, a child might be exposed to certain allergens, asked to breathe in a certain substance or asked to perform a physical activity if exercise-induced asthma is suspected.
Lung tests are sometimes done to diagnose asthma in children older than five years of age. These tests, known as spirometry, involve taking deep breaths and forcefully exhaling through a tube that’s hooked up to a machine called a spirometer. This machine records how much air is exhaled and how quickly it is exhaled. An asthma drug is given to open up the airways, and the test is performed again. Having measurements that drastically improve on the second test can indicate asthma. Lung tests are part of the most reliable Asthma Treatments in Columbus MS offers for children ages five and up.
For children younger than five, doctors often rely on symptoms, a physical exam and medical history to diagnose asthma. Common symptoms include wheezing, coughing more at night, chest tightness and shortness of breath. Since these symptoms can also be caused by other respiratory ailments, doctors have to rule out those conditions before diagnosing asthma. If the most reliable Asthma Testing Columbus MS has to offer leads to a diagnosis of asthma, doctors will often prescribe a bronchodilator for asthma attacks.