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Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Traveling with asthma....

We were traveling last week, and of course someone in the family was sick. It seems like EVERY time we travel, someone is sick. I guess that's what happens when Hubby and I both work. Both of our sons work and go to college, and daughter Kitty is in school with 1200 other germ infested students. So there are LOTS of germs floating around.

So, what to do when you travel and you have asthma?

We started by checking to make sure we had our Out of State Coverage cards from our insurance company. Then Hubby looked up locations that were covered in the area where we were traveling. There were a few doctor's offices there that would accept our insurance. There was also a hospital. 

Then we made sure we packed maintenance medications, the rescue inhalers and allergy medicine. Oh, and LOTS of tissues.

The problem we found when we travel is that we are off our regular schedule. So, we had to remember to take our maintenance medication each morning. At home, we have a regular routine when we get ready for work or school. Not so much when we travel.

We had to put our medicine out on the table in the hotel room so we would see it and remember to take it every morning and every night.

We also checked the pollen count in that area before we left so we knew how much allergy medicine to bring. There are a lot of different sites out there that work well to find your pollen level.   

I also took my Epi Pen, and it was interesting because of all the airports and secured buildings we visited, I only had one person stop me and ask me about it. The guard pointed it out on the x-ray screen and asked what it was. It looked a long spring on the screen, so I was confused for a minute. Then I realized it had to be my Epi Pen (it looks a lot different in on the x-ray screen than it does in my purse!)  I told him it was my Epi Pen and took it out to show him. He then waved me through security. 

We were okay with our allergies and asthma while we were there, but I believe in being prepared. I know that if I DON'T take our medicine on vacation, something will happen and I wish we WOULD have brought it. If I do bring it, we seem to do well. Maybe it's just knowing that it's there and we are prepared.....just in case.


  1. 'Germ-infested students'
    Haha, very true. My friends think I'm insane, but that's how I view everyone, especially when I'm on pred! I am often seen sterilising tables or sanitising my hands...(I should probably get that checked out)

    1. As a mom, it's shocking to me how many people don't wash their hands when they use the restroom.

      I also see them cough and sneeze into their hands.

      I always wash my hands, carry hand sanitizer and clean my hands before I eat.

      I also open door knobs with paper towels and use my knuckle to hit the elevator call button.

      You would like to think that people wash their hands......but they don't. And then they touch everything we touch.

      It's actually a little repulsive

  2. Hi there,
    My 16 month old has asthma and has been hospitalized twice this fall. His asthma only affects him when he gets sick. He is finally on a controller (QVAR) but hasn't gotten sick yet. Now I have a cold and am
    worried he will catch it and will end up in the hospital. How effective have you found controllers in keeping your kids out of the hospital when they get sick?

    1. I have found them to be VERY effective because they keep the swelling down in the lungs. For us, if we aren't on controllers, there is an underlying swelling in the lungs, then a small cold on top of that turns into pneumonia (and another hospitalization.)

      I would make sure your son doesn't skip a dose of Qvar - which is hard for teenagers. Make sure he is taking it twice a day if that is what the doctor prescribed.

      When my kids would start a cold, sometimes my doctor would bump of the dose of my kid's controller meds (if they were on a lower dose.)

      Ask your doctor about that - you don't want to exceed the maximum dose.

      This website has some GREAT info about When to go to the ER if your child has asthma.

      You should also have an Asthma Action Plan from your doctor so you know what to do.

      For us, we would also add albuterol for our kids. And when that didn't help, we would do oral steroids (prednisone).

      When that didn't work, we would get a steroid shot (Decadron.)

      When that didn't work, they would end up in the hospital for 3 days.

      I'm a maniac about germs. Your son probably won't wash his hands as often as he should (teenagers) but since you are sick - you can. Wash your hands every time you blow your nose and be careful what you touch.

      Spray the door handles, fridge handles, etc with Lysol or wipe them with pop up bleach wipes.

      Hand santizer works great too - my kids would use that before they had lunch at school. Those places are walking bug factories! Yikes!

      Good luck!

  3. Thanks so much for getting back to me. He's only 16months old so it's hard because he can't tell me when he feels a cold coming on or when he's starting to feel his airways tightening. I do my best to wash his hands before meals, but these toddlers love nothing more than fingers in their mouth!

    He also suffers from a peanut, milk, egg allergy... so your blog is so helpful!!

    1. I understand! That was the hardest thing for me when my kids were little.

      So I would watch for the emergency signs listed on Nemour's hospital website

      I wasn't afraid to take my kids to the doc and say, "something's just not right....I can't put my finger on it but something is wrong."

      Sometimes my kid's skin color would change and be pale, they would be lethargic, they wouldn't eat.

      Also, when my kids would get bad, their voice would change. I could hear how tight they were.

      Make sure your doctor has an asthma action plan for your son - then you know what to do and when to do it.

      It does get better! When my kids were little we knew EVERY after hours clinic and knew the ER. Don't be afraid to get help if you feel like you aren't sure what to do are are in over your head.

      As for the food allergies may be familiar with FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education), but they are helpful too!

      My son did outgrow his milk allergy, but he still has the tree nut allergy. Sigh.

      Keep your chin up!

      You can do this!