As many as six million children in the United States live with the chronic symptoms of asthma, and many more suffer from seasonal or persistent allergies. At Forest Pediatrics in The Woodlands, Texas, Murray Fershtman, MD, an experienced pediatrician, and the staff offer comprehensive care for both allergies and asthma to protect your child’s respiratory health. Dr. Fershtman provides aggressive treatment plans to prevent emergencies and help your child live a happy, healthy life. Call Forest Pediatrics to schedule a consultation for asthma and allergies or book an appointment online today.
Asthma is a chronic lung disease that affects breathing. Certain asthma triggers cause sudden swelling in the airways that makes it difficult to breathe. The body also produces excess mucus that interferes with the ability to take in sufficient oxygen.
Asthma triggers can include:
You can also experience an asthma attack due to contact with substances in your environment if you have allergies (allergic asthma).
Allergies are a response from your immune system. When you are around dust, pollen, mold, or other common allergies, your body produces antibodies that trigger a variety of physical symptoms like nasal congestion, sneezing, coughing, and airway swelling that causes an asthma attack. Your child may also be allergic to certain foods or medicines.
To confirm your child’s breathing issues are related to asthma and to identify the underlying triggers of allergies, Forest Pediatrics offers in-house asthma and allergy testing services.
Dr. Fershtman uses pulmonary function tests that measure how much air your child can move in and out of their lungs, as well as how fast they can move it. This test involves breathing into a tube that connects to a measuring device.
For identifying allergies, Dr. Fershtman uses skin prick testing that involves injecting small amounts of suspected allergens under your child’s skin. Following the injection, any swelling or welts that develop can indicate an allergic reaction.
To ensure your child is safe throughout testing, Dr. Fershtman continually monitors your child’s vital signs and breathing. Forest Pediatrics has treatment technology to address asthma attacks and a severe allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis. This reaction causes sudden airway inflammation that makes it difficult to breathe.
Treating asthma and allergies requires a customized treatment plan that Dr. Fershtman creates for your child. He takes an aggressive approach to minimize your child’s symptoms and reduce the need for emergency room visits.
Your child may need short-acting and long-acting asthma medication to control symptoms and reduce the risk for recurrent asthma attacks. Dr. Fershtman may also recommend breathing treatments for severe symptoms. These treatments deliver asthma medication through a nebulizer mask that fits over your child’s nose and mouth.
Managing seasonal and chronic allergies might involve over-the-counter or prescription medication to keep symptoms under control. Dr. Fershtman also works with you and your child to limit exposure to known allergies. He can help with dietary changes if your child has food allergies.
If your child is at risk of experiencing anaphylaxis, they need to carry an epinephrine pen that delivers medication to quickly reduce airway inflammation to improve breathing. Your child also needs a follow-up evaluation after an anaphylactic episode to ensure they recover fully.
If your child needs help managing asthma and allergies, call Forest Pediatrics, or schedule an evaluation online today.