Asthma Attacks Suck

Discussion in 'Countryside Families' started by Ninn, Jan 5, 2007.

  1. Ninn

    Ninn Custom Crochet Queen

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    Well, Kevin had another one last nite. Bad enough that he couldnt feel his face or arms. Last time it got that bad, it accelerated into tachychardia. That caused a heart attack. Of course we couldnt find his inhaler-it was in his jacket. He tried to ride his bike downtown to get milk for his sister's baby. (he's such a good brother) He wound up calling for a ride home, jumping out of a moving truck and basically having a panic attack within his asthma attack. It took 4 doses with his albuterol inhaler and a trip to the ER to get him calmed down. Today he is pale and sick and tired and all he wants to do is sleep. His whole body is sore. I don't understand why they can't come up with a way to get this under control. He has a heart condition, so steroids are off limits to him. HGH shots to stimulate growth of lungs are off limits for the same reason. He doesnt get to do any of the things boys are supposed to do because of this. What else can we do for him? He wants to hunt, but can't walk in the woods for very far without having an attack. He can't play sports or ride atv's or anything. Cold weather is the worst, so we have been really blessed with warm temps this year. He has a humidifier going in every room in the house to help prevent another infection like last year's. We have no carpet and sweep and vaccuum daily. His room is a pet free zone. The heater vents all have washable cheesecloth covers in them to capture dust and dander, etc. I am out of ideas how to help him and the doctors dont have any new ideas either.

    How can we get this under control so he can have a normal life? He is 16 and is tired of sitting around the house all the time.
     
  2. sweetcountrygrl

    sweetcountrygrl Well-Known Member

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    I'm sorry to hear this. I have asthma too, so I can relate, however my isn't nearly as severe as his. I'll say a prayer for the both of you.
     

  3. myheaven

    myheaven Well-Known Member Supporter

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    My son has asthma and we are TOTALLY changing how we are doing things. He drinks a red clover tea (the purple flowers on the plant) and honey. we do oragino oil breathing treatment two times a day I do it with him it stings the nose but wow my lungs feel great also (1 drop oregano oil in a cup of boiling water towel over his head and cup breath till stops steaming keep eyes closed) and I think the most helpful thing is the zone therpy. heres a good web site www.energybalancing.com/therapy/zone Ill have to try the link I typed it in Ill correct it if its not working. He has had to only use his inhaler one time this year so far whic is a MAJOR improvement. A cold was setting in so it trigered the attack. As far as I have been educated. asthma is an over reaction of the imunesystem. They are finding so many new things to treat asthma.
    You can use just plain dried oragano but you will have to use alot more. If you want to try it use 1 rounded tlb spoon of dried oragano to 1 14 oz cup boiling water have him breath it and see how he does. Its great for clearing congestion from a nasty cold for anyone else also. Good luck for the both of you. God bless.
     
  4. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Cold, dry weather IS bad! My son has thankfully outgrown that stage! But, until he was 6 or so.......

    Has he been tested for allergies? IT might not hurt. And, does he wear a face mask when he goes out in the winter? A scarf around his nose and mouth might help also.
     
  5. daddio

    daddio Well-Known Member

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    I have terrible asthma epecially when I get a viral infection or a bacterial infection. Asthma shows up before the infection symptoms do. I spent 2 days last week (Wed & Sat) in my Resp. Specialist's office getting an Aminophyllin IV, Aristocort shot, Nebulizer (Albuteral) treatments. I refused Prednisone . . . can't stand the stuff even though it helps me get over things a lot quicker. Nothing worse than when you can't breathe.

    My dr's book is "All About Asthma" By Glennon Paul (and some other lady doctor). I've read it 100 times.

    Hope he is feeling better. BTW, I'm 45 and started w/ it at 35. It gets worse as I get older. I often wonder if the fact that I grew up in a smoke filled house (mom and dad were both heavy smokers) has any bearing on it. I've never smoked myself. Can't stand the stuff and it grosses me out to be around it.
     
  6. full sun

    full sun Well-Known Member

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    Ninn, I have asthma, too. So I can really sympathize. It's such an awful feeling to be panting and no air is getting in. And how awful for you faced the horror of your son's heat attack.

    There are lot's of treatments beyond steroids. I have never tried anything homepathic, so I can't help you with a natural treatment. But you should have breathing machine for him. It could save you the trip to the ER and worse. As far as getting it under control, I am on Singulair, which is a daily pill specifically for asthma control. OTC claritan might help allergies, too. There is Floradil, which is not a steroid, but a maintenance like a steroid. There are other things, Serevent and ummmm, I know there's more.... Are you seeing an allergist?

    ALso, it doesn't work to have a pet free room, even with the cheese cloth covered vents. He would need his own heating system, too. I would get him tested, find out exactly what he is allergic to and eliminate it from the home. Even if it is a dear, dear pet. :Bawling: It's a life threatening situation, so you need to be pretty drastic. As you know, the asthma is really hard on his heart.

    He should have more than one emergency inhaler. He should have one that stays in one spot, never, ever moved. Or he should wear one around his neck.

    I jog and I take a puff of albterol *before* I go. If he takes a preventative puff before he rides his bike or goes for a walk in the woods, it will prevent an attack.

    A hot bath and a bit of wine will help to calm him down if he does panic again.

    I feel awful that you all have to go through this. I hope you find what works for you very, very soon. I am sure he is miserable...

    Jennifer
     
  7. jerzeygurl

    jerzeygurl woolgathering

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    try some mullien either as a tea or as a steam
     
  8. full sun

    full sun Well-Known Member

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    One thing that just occured to me: You mentioned he can't have steroids because of the heart condition. Does that include inhaled steroids? If you don't know, find out from a doctor. Inhaled steroids don't give you the same side effects that oral steroids give. And an inhaled steroid will work wonders.

    Jennifer
     
  9. deb

    deb Well-Known Member

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    I'm 45 and have had asthma all my life. The asthma drugs I use now weren't around when I was a kid and I don't know if I would've survived childhood if I hadn't learned to control my emotions.

    Asthma attacks get worse when the person becomes afraid...the pulse races, breathing gets faster...all of that feeds into the asthma attack. When I was little I realized that if I kept calm, my attack wouldn't get worse and as I got older I could actually reduce some of my symptoms.

    How to teach your child to stay calm? One way would be doing Biofeedback as I have heard it helps young asthmatics control their attacks. Another thing would be to practice calming sessions together with your son. Practicing slower breathing and calming thoughts every day would be a start.

    HTH
    deb
    in wi
     
  10. kitty32_z8

    kitty32_z8 Well-Known Member

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    Another servere asthmatic here. Has almost killed me a few times.Life suport 2 times.
    Things to help:
    Develop and use an asthma action plan with his dr.
    Learn to use and read a peak flow meter- can tell when attack is coming on before it gets noticable.Also can so deminishing lung capacity.
    Learn pursed lip breathing technique.
    Learn to use all of his lungs deeep breathing techniques. Remember to push all the air out of lungs before spraying and breath all the way in.
    Use a spacer on inhalers.
    If old enough learnign meditation techniques help also.
    Get a nebuliser and have him use his albuterol SVN in that machine instead of rescue inhaler. Works MUCH more effectively.
    Get allergy testing -if allergies try singulair and allergy meds. Allergies will cause post nasal drip to get into the lungs and get inffected.
    Theopholline - another good maintance medication non steriod.
    Can he use atrovent? If taking a nebuliser machine works better without as many tachychardia effects.
    Get him involved in swimming or a wind instrument at school. Increases lung capacity.
    Use a hankerchief over his mouth when out in cold weather. it helps warm it before entering the lungs and shocking them.
    Hope something on this list will help. also as his mom you need to asak about special CPR training for asthmatics. It helps to know how to force medication into the lungs when he is unresponsive. I know cause my DH has had to do it to one of my sons.
    Good luck.
     
  11. Ninn

    Ninn Custom Crochet Queen

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    THanks for all the information, folks. Without pulling out his medical files, I couldnt begin to tell you what he has and has not used. He is allergic to a ton of stuff, but it is all medicines!! No dog or cat allergies, etc. No food allergies either. The dander can be a problem if we don't keep it down, so we damp mop the floors every day and try to keep it from flying around in the air. We shampoo the furniture and such on a regular basis. He was born with a small heart and lungs that were only 2/3 the size they needed to be, and they were full of amniotic fluid. He has never been a fully healthy child. Even trying to keep track of his triggers makes us crazy. Somedays he is fine and the next day, the same stuff he did the day before causes an attack. He has difficulty swimming because of the pressure on his lungs from the water. I think he is afraid he might have an attack in the water and drown, so he doesnt go in the water much without one of us right nearby. He has a pfm, but his personal best has not been charted this year. His medical insurance doesnt cover more than a few specialist appointments, so we try to hold out as long as we can.

    I am going to copy down some of these other medicines and such and bring them up at his next appointment. (3 days from now because of last night's attack). Maybe his doctor will have some new ideas. Mostly they dont want to do much because he has medical assistance and it takes forever for them to get paid. It's hard to get very far around here with MA. That's all I have and I haven't seen my specialist for fibro in over a year cuz they won't pay her at all.
     
  12. tchan

    tchan Well-Known Member

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    My son has ,thankfully, at 14 outgrown most of the asthma attacks that plagued him when he was little. He had a lot of trouble last summer because all of the rain caused huge amounts of mold and pollen. But he takes an inhaled steriod and I agree with full sun, it works wonders. My son also has ADHD and cannot take a lot of things without getting quite hyper but the Pulmacort did the trick where his normal inhaler didn't.
     
  13. BeeFree

    BeeFree Well-Known Member Supporter

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    My DD got asthma when she was around 12 yrs old. They hospitalized her and the dr put her on theovent. She was on that stuff for years. She only had a couple attacks during that time. Then she quit taking it for about 5 yrs.

    She got married when she was 23 and she started having attacks again. More doctors and more meds. She got it under control again, and and got a divorce, and then later remarried, and started having attacks again. More docs and more meds. She now has a nebulizer, inhalers, meds, takes shots for allergies and if she starts getting a sinus infection, has to get to the dr as it will turn into an asthma attack.

    It is scarry. Especially when she also goes into a panic attack. I have rushed her to ER a few times and I didn't know if I was going to make it with her or not. They put her on oxygen and give her some shots and she gets better, but there have been times when she has quit breathing for at least 5 mins.

    I feel for you and your son. Keep on at the doctors and see what they can try that is new. Might just be something that will work.
     
  14. Jen H

    Jen H Well-Known Member

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    I have to ditto what another poster said about inhaled steroids being amazing. Advair has been a revelation to me - I can do just about anything without wheezing or worrying about it. I also do keep albuterol inhalers around. I fill the prescription every month and have one in the glove compartment of the car and truck, one in my backpack, one next to my bed, one in my purse... you get the idea. Rotate them so they keep full potency, but make sure they're always handy.

    One thing that helps me alot when I do have an attack is to do measured breathing. Breathe out through pursed lips for a count of 4, then in through the nose for a count of 2. Back out through the mouth for a count of 4, then back in through the nose for a count of 2. Between concentrating on the breathing and thinking about counting, the panic calms down. Once the panic calms down, the breathing will *usually* calm down. It can at least help while you're on the way to the hospital or searching madly for the inhaler.

    I know first hand how hard this is. Keep at the doctors - there are all sorts of asthma medications and combinations out there.
     
  15. fellini123

    fellini123 Well-Known Member

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    ok, 54 year old asthmatic here with severe congestive heart failure, as a child I was hospitalized frequently for asthma attacks. Until I was about your sons age and then I learned to control my breathing, learned the signs of an attack coming on and immediatley went into breathing exercises.
    As one person said, measured breathing, awareness of his own body and what it is doing. Learning control.
    I used to use my inhaler many times a day. It stayed in my hand pretty much 24/7. Now that I am older and medications are better the one thing that REALLY helped me is Singular it is a miracle drug. I went from using an inhaler 7 or more times a day, and an inhaled steriod twice a day, to taking 1 Singular pill once a day. I rarely use the inhalor anymore, only when having to work outside in really cold weather, or in an extrememly dusty environment. Like grouting tile floors!!!!!
    Between the heart condition and the asthma I can get very short of breath easily, but I have learned how to breath. Deep controlled breaths, slow, no matter how panicky I think I am. After 54 years I firmly believe that asthma is a great deal of mind over matter. You can control it with positive thinking and full knowledge of what is going on in your body. One feeds the other, dont let it get the better of you!
    When I was in the hospital with a severe heart condition, ejection factor of 8. I was bored and played with the monitor. I would control my breathing, slow, gentle, and try to get it so the monitor couldn't read it........sent the nurses into a panic more than once!!!! But it was great practice, found out you can really do it......tell him to hang in there.
    Oh and I do all sorts of things, I show dogs, and not little ones big old Afghan Hounds where you really have to run around the ring. I ride horses, both jumpers and dressage. I garden, I do chores including mucking out the barn!!! We have many dogs and they several live in the house. So learn, breath, try singular if you haven't already....and it will get better.
    Alice in Virginia
     
  16. Ninn

    Ninn Custom Crochet Queen

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    Alice~

    Thank you for showing him that people can learn to control their breathing. I showed him the post and he is going to practice. However, Singulair will never be an option for him again. The worst side effect it has is making you more susceptible to lung infections. His idiot doctor didnt take him off it while he spent 14 months battling the last infection. Turned out the Singulair was lowering his defenses against certain bacteria and was actually making the infection worse. After we took him off that, the infection cleared up in about 3 weeks.

    When he stops growing, this will not be so much of a problem for him. Right now it's just hard for his heart and lungs to keep up with the demands of a growing body. Since the average adult only uses 2/3 of their lung capacity and his are 1/3 too small, he is using his full capacity at all times. It does great things for his metabolism, but it makes normal activity very exhausting sometimes. His lungs just get tired. I wish with all my heart that this was just regular asthma. He has it because his lungs are just too small for his body right now. Can't change that. But learning some breathing techniques looks ilke a good option for calming himself and relaxing out of the attack. Thank you.