Air Pollution

Southern California is one of the most beautiful areas in the world. The glitz and glamour of Hollywood, the rolling hills, and the bright sunny beaches make the Los Angeles area a great place to visit, and an even better place to live.  However, despite the beauty, there are a few drawbacks to living in LA.

Take the smog, for example. Due to factors like climate and geography, Los Angeles is known for its high levels of air pollution, which puts citizens at risk for a number of illnesses and health issues. Kids with asthma are especially at risk, with air pollution playing a role in the development of asthma.

Keep reading for more on asthma and air pollution, including tips on identifying symptoms, seeking proper treatment, and reducing the risks associated with this illness.

What is Asthma?

Asthma is a condition characterized by the narrowing of airways and the excess production of mucous. In children and adults with asthma, breathing can be difficult, and is often accompanied by symptoms like the following:

  • Coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Tightness or pain in the chest
  • Rapid or irregular breathing
  • Symptoms that worsen when accompanied by a cold or flu, or when the patient is exposed to allergens, high levels of air pollution or other triggers.

Seeking the Proper Treatment

For some patients, asthma and its symptoms are mild in nature; for others, this illness can be severe, and may warrant urgent or emergency treatment. For children with asthma, it’s up to parents to decide which course of treatment is necessary in any given situation.

And since asthma flareups can worsen in a short amount of time, thinking and acting quickly is extremely important. When time is of the essence, tips like the following can help parents make the proper treatment decisions:

  • Seek immediate treatment. For persistent symptoms – including difficulty breathing or talking, severe shortness of breath, or bluish lips or fingernails –  that don’t go away with the use of fast-acting medications, always seek immediate medical treatment. Since time is always a factor, urgent care facilities like Los Angeles urgent care and Glendale urgent care are equipped to give fast, effective treatment to patients in the LA area. If your child has trouble walking or is complaining of chest pains, call 911, right away.
  • Make an appointment. If you think your child could have asthma, or he or she is already under a doctor’s care, and you notice a gradual worsening of symptoms, make an appointment as soon as possible. Regular treatment and followup care can go a long way in reducing symptoms and preventing flareups, so be sure to keep all appointments and follow doctors’ orders to a tee. This includes monitoring symptoms and administering medications, some of which may be given daily, while others are only used during flareups.

Preventing Flareups

Children with asthma should avoid triggers like cigarette smoke, air pollution and common allergens like pollen, dust and pet dander.

Air purifiers can help, as can regular dusting, vacuuming, and cleaning of air ducts and filters. And since certain household cleaners can trigger flareups, all-natural cleaning agents like vinegar, lemon juice, and baking soda are recommended.

Asthma is a serious illness, no matter where you live. Unfortunately, the smog in Los Angeles can make symptoms worse for citizens with this illness. Thankfully, though, by learning to identify symptoms and make quick decisions regarding treatment, asthma can be controlled in both children and adults. With the tips provided here, parents are better equipped at spotting warning signs and seeking the proper care for children suffering flareups.