Back-to-school Asthma Checklist

The start of a new school year is a big transition after the long summer break, especially if your child has asthma. Planning ahead is important in helping your student continue to control his or her asthma throughout the school year. That’s why Parkview Community Nursing created this Back-to-school Checklist.

These steps can help you keep your child happy and healthy throughout the school year:

Create an up-to-date asthma action plan. Your child should have a written asthma action plan that includes personal information about his or her asthma symptoms and medicines, and any physical activity limitations. The plan should also have specific instructions about what to do if an asthma episode does not get better with prescribed medicine.

Schedule an asthma checkup with your physician. Even if your child hasn’t had any symptoms or attacks in some time, regular checkups are very important to continued asthma management. During this visit, your physician should:

  • Watch your child use an inhaler and provide guidance if he or she isn’t using it effectively
  • Update asthma-control medicine prescriptions, if needed
  • Complete any forms required by the school to let your child have an asthma inhaler, nebulizer or other asthma-control medicine on school grounds
  • Give you a form that grants permission for your child to carry and self-administer his or her asthma-control medicine

Visit with your child’s educators at school. Your child’s school nurse, teachers and coaches should each have an up-to-date copy of your child’s asthma action plan. The educators should also be aware of your child’s asthma triggers and usual symptoms so these adults can be prepared to assist your child, if an episode occurs at school. If your child has asthma that worsens during exercise, you should notify your child’s physical education teacher and coach(es).

Talk with your child about his or her asthma. Going back to school can be a very exciting time, and you can help your child have a healthy school year by talking about:

  • Recognizing and controlling triggers
  • Identifying early-warning signs of an asthma episode
  • Administering asthma-control medicine (and knowing where it’s kept at school)
  • Knowing who to go to for help, if symptoms, or an episode, occur

Have questions about managing your child’s asthma? Contact your school nurse or call Parkview Community Nursing at 260-266-2471.

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