Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Asthma and Allergies

So last week when we had Kaitlyn's physical we weren't anticipating anything big with her. Just routine stuff. However, after doing a breathing survey which they asked me to do the doctor said I think she has asthma. So she starts going into this whirl wind of information for me completely unexpected and asking okay so steroid inhaler, or once daily non steroid pill. I must have had this deer caught in the headlights look on my face because the doctor says to me would you like to go home and research this and discuss it with your husband. Ummm, yes please.

So what she did in the meantime was order an albuterol treatment for her to try at night to see if it helped her coughing at night. Told us to get some blood work done so we could try to find her triggers and come back in a week. So we left with a plan to come back in a week.

Well, the week is up. I used my time wisely and researched everything. Even had gotten the results of her blood test which showed she's allergic to dust, mold, and several different kinds of trees all of which are very common around here. Okay, allergies, good I can handle that because that's what I assumed was her problem all along. So I decided we'll start by trying the Singulair once daily non steroid pill as our course of treatment for Kaitlyn. I mean after all it's an allergy medicine that's supposed to help with all of these allergies Kaitlyn apparently has so it will be the perfect choice for her. Joe was in agreement. I am prepared though that if this does not help her that we might have to go to the steroid, but I want to at least give this a try.

So we went back today to discuss the plan with the doctor. She asked how she was coughing at night and I told her it's getting much better. She even has told me that she's sleeping better. Good to hear. She listened to her breathing and she does hear a slight wheeze. So looks like it's definitely asthma. Now it also turns out that she's not just kind of allergic to dust, but she's very allergic to dust. Can't totally eliminate dust of course, but she told me what we need to do to help her especially with sleeping at night. First of all her bedding (including her pillow if we can) must be washed every week or two in hot hot water. We should get mattress and pillow covers to repel the dust. And her stuffed animals will either need to be stuck in the freezer or washed in hot hot water frequently. Especially the ones she sleeps with. Okay, I can deal with that. We're actually pretty fortunate I think to not have carpeting here so I don't have to worry about dealing with dust in the carpet.

Now, our asthma plan. We will use the Singulair once a day at night before bed. The Albuterol treatment will now be used whenever she's going to be doing any strenuous physical activity. So the doctor has written a prescription for a 2nd pump and spacer to be used at school. We will mark her coughing on the calendar to see if she has improvement and this is helping. We will go back in a month to say how everything is going and figure out if the Singulair is working for her or we need to go to the steroid inhaler. I have all sorts of paperwork for the school so they can administer all of this to her. She will have to do it 30 minutes before gym or recess while at school.

So the next few weeks will be interesting. This is a whole new journey for me. Just when I think I've got all the kids on the right track. Next month I will be spending lots of time at the doctor's office actually with two more physicals to go. Lots of doctor's appointments coming up. I will likely be going to my own doctor much more frequently very soon too so gotta keep all of these dates in line.


Sandra said...

How interesting, I understand why that came as a total shock, especially when you had no idea. Good for you though for researching and not taking everything at face value. Asthma is nothing to take lightly, but you really have got things under control. Be very proud.