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Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Are you giving your kids medicine the right way? Only 1 in 169 parents are...

(Shutterstock Image)

How hard is it to give kids medicine the right way? Well, it may be harder than you think!  A new study by Children's Hospital at Montefiore in New York City showed that only 1 in 169 caregivers gave children their asthma medicine the right way. Yikes!!

What happens if you don't give them their medicine the right way? According to Dr. Douglas Jones, who is an immunologist at Rocky Mountain Allergy and Asthma and Immunology clinic, 
"This poor administration leads to a low concentration of the drug into the lungs, which, in turn, inadequately controls the disease"
I understand that sentence to mean that kids may not have the protective benefits of the medicine when they need it most. If they aren't getting all of the medicine into their lungs, it won't help control the swelling. If your kids already have swelling (or inflammation) in their lungs (which you can't see or feel), then that may put them at risk of getting REALLY sick if they get a cold when their lungs are already swollen. (For our kids, that means pneumonia and being admitted to the hospital...)

Here's a quote from Webmd's website about asthma and inflammation in the lungs:

"People with asthma have red and swollen bronchial tubes. This inflammation is thought to contribute greatly to the long-term damage that asthma can cause to the lungs. And, therefore, treating this inflammation is key to managing asthma in the long run." 
 So, what is the right way to use asthma medicine? There is an asthma telehealth on the Utah Department of Health's Asthma Program website from May 3, 2011 (so scroll down the page until you find the right episode). It's called, "In the world of asthma, device matters." Dr. David Young, PharmD,  is an Associate Professor (Clinical) at the University of Utah. He shows how to use the most common asthma medicine on the market.

He teaches all sorts of cool stuff! Did you know that you shouldn't take 2 quick puffs on your inhaler? Why? There is a reservoir at the base of the inhaler. If you take 2 quick puffs, it doesn't allow time for the air and medicine in the reservoir to mix after the first puff of the inhaler. So, you aren't getting all of the medicine that you THINK you are getting! Watch the telehealth to learn more. You may find that after all these years, you have been using your inhaler wrong!

My asthma medicine is VERY expensive, and I want to make sure all the medicine is making it into my lungs. I paid for it, I'm going to get the most out of my medicine! 

Happy Viewing!! :) 


  1. Yes, that's important, if You have it in spray. But in discs there is no problem with giving, I think. Very little children can't take discs, so there was very big affair in my country after changing prices of sprays (they go up, some very up). But adult people can take discs. You have teenage children, if I well understand. Did You think about discs? Greetings for You :)

    1. Hi Zim,

      Yes, discs are a little easier for kids to handle. Most kids can start using them at age 12.

      It just depends on what your insurance company will cover...

    2. Here in Poland it doesn't matter, because most people here are in public health service - and for government discs are cheaper than normal inhalers. But not everyone can take discs...

    3. Interesting, I can't remember the cost of the inhaler versus the disc, we just have to use whatever the insurance tells us to take...

  2. Hi! Glad to have stumbled upon your blog! I was wondering if you feature guest postings. Thanks and have a great day!

    1. Hi Hannah,

      Thanks for stopping by! I haven't had anyone guest blog because I usually have enough stories (after taking care of my 3 teenager's asthma for the last 14 years.....)

      Do you have a blog? I would love to read it! :)

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