Asthma Photo Gallery

Asthma Photo Gallery

1
Nebulizer Treatment

A Child Getting a Nebulizer Treatment
Asthma Photos A Child Getting a Nebulizer Treatment. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

Asthma is a common pediatric condition, but the proper treatment of kids with asthma often confuses many parents, leading to poorly controlled asthma, missed days of school, and trips to the ER in the middle of the night.

These photos of children using nebulizers, spacers, peak flow meters, and asthma inhalers, will help to demonstrate some of the treatment options available for kids with asthma, so that you can better understand how to manage your child's asthma.

 

A photo of a child getting a nebulizer treatment using a mask, like you would for an asthma attack.

A nebulizer, also called a breathing machine by many parents, is a great way to give children their asthma treatments, including:

Reliever Asthma Medicines

  • Albuterol
  • Xopenex

or a Controller or Preventative Asthma Medicine, such as Pulmicort Respules.

While many experts think that using an inhaler with a spacer or a spacer and mask is just as effective as using a nebulizer, that is really only if you use very good technique, which is hard with young children. For this reason, a nebulizer may be more effective for you, especially if you don't think that your child will use a spacer well.

Newer nebulizers for asthma are small, easy to use, and aren't even very loud. If you have an older nebulizer, especially if it isn't misting any more, you should likely replace it with a newer model.

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Using a Nebulizer with a Mask

Using a Nebulizer with a Mask
Asthma Photos Using a Nebulizer with a Mask. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

A closeup photo of a preschooler using a nebulizer with a mask on.

While older children and teens can simply use a nebulizer with a regular mouthpiece, younger infants, toddlers, and preschoolers usually require a mask that fits over their mouth and nose to get an effective treatment.

Be sure you remember to clean your nebulizer, following the manufacturer's instructions, after you use it.

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Preschooler Neb Treatment

A preschooler getting a neb treatment with a mouthpiece.
Asthma Photos A preschooler getting a neb treatment with a mouthpiece, although he would likely be better off using a mask. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

A preschooler getting a neb treatment with a mouthpiece, although he would likely be better off using a mask.

Remember that most younger children should use a nebulizer with a mask that fits over their mouth and nose.

The main problem with simply using a nebulizer with a mouthpiece is that if your younger child is breathing through his nose, then he won't get the medicine in the nebulizer.

4
Neb Treatment with Mask

A Neb Treatment with a Mask
Asthma Photos A Neb Treatment with a Mask. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

A closeup photo of a child getting a nebulizer treatment with a mask.

In this closeup photo, you can actually see the medicine misting from the nebulizer holding chamber. If your nebulizer is not misting well, then it likely isn't working and may need to be repaired or replaced.

The end of misting is also a sign that an asthma treatment has ended.

5
Using an MDI with a Spacer and Mask

A child using an albuterol MDI with a spacer and mask, which can help relieve asthma symptoms.
Asthma Photos A child using an albuterol MDI with a spacer and mask, which can help relieve asthma symptoms. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

A child using an albuterol MDI with a spacer and mask, which can help relieve asthma symptoms.

Many experts think that if you are using very good technique, an inhaler with a spacer and mask can be as good as using a nebulizer to deliver asthma medications.

A nebulizer also can have many disadvantages. In addition to taking almost 10 minutes to complete a breathing treatment, many younger children cry if they have to wear a mask to deliver the nebulized treatment. Nebulizers also aren't as convenient or portable as an inhaler.

Instructions for using a spacer and mask with an inhaler include that you:

  • put the inhaler mouthpiece into the spacer
  • shake the inhaler and spacer
  • hold the mask over your child's nose and mouth and create a good seal
  • press the inhaler
  • have your child breath in and out at least six times to be sure that he gets all of the medicine
  • remove the mask and repeat if more than one puff was prescribed

Keep in mind that while many experts believe that an MDI with a spacer is as good as a nebulized treatment, some parents prefer a nebulizer.

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Too Young To Use An MDI

Too Young To Use An MDI
Asthma Photos This preschool age child is too young to use a metered dose inhaler by itself, and would be better off using it with a spacer and mask. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

This preschool age child is too young to use a metered dose inhaler by itself, and would be better off using it with a spacer and mask.

In addition to using an inhaler with a spacer and mask, a nebulizer with a mask would be a good way to deliver this child his asthma medications.

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Using a Nebulizer

A school age child getting a nebulizer treatment.
Asthma Photos A school age child getting a nebulizer treatment. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

A school age child getting a nebulizer treatment.

A nebulizer treatment can help to relieve asthma symptoms if a reliever medicine, such as Albuterol or Xopenex, is used. In addition to using a nebulizer, a school aged child could also be taught to use an inhaler with a spacer to get his asthma treatment.

Dry powdered inhalers are also becoming popular for school aged children, so that they can avoid using a spacer or nebulizer all together.

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Proventil HFA with a Spacer

An older child using a Proventil HFA inhaler with a spacer.
Asthma Photos An older child using a Proventil HFA inhaler with a spacer. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

An older child using a Proventil HFA inhaler with a spacer.

An inhaler with a spacer is much more convenient for older children, who can take it to school, sporting events, and other afterschool activities, which might be difficult to do with a nebulizer.

Even if you have a nebulizer at home, an inhaler with a spacer can be good to have when your child is on the go, just in case he has asthma symptoms.

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Advair

A Child Using Advair
Asthma Photos A Child Using Advair. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

A child using Advair to help prevent his asthma symptoms.

Although the Advair Diskus approved for children over age 4, many children under age 5 or 6 have a hard time using the breath-activated Advair Diskus.

Advair contains two medications, a steroid and a long-acting bronchodilator, and is taken twice a day, every day, to help prevent asthma attacks and improve lung function.

10
Preschooler Using Advair

A preschooler is likely too young to use an Advair dry powdered inhaler.
Asthma Photos A preschooler is likely too young to use an Advair dry powdered inhaler. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

A preschooler is likely too young to use an Advair dry powdered inhaler.

Although approved for children over age 4, some children under age 5 or 6 have a hard time using the breath-activated Advair Diskus.

Alternative asthma controllers might include Pulmicort Respules, that can be given with a nebulizer, or using Qvar inhaler or Flovent MDI with a spacer and mask.

In addition, Advair is now available as an Advair HFA inhaler that could be used with a spacer or a spacer and mask under the guidance of your pediatrician. It isn't approved for younger children, but if your child's asthma isn't under control with other available medicines, the use of Advair HFA might be considered.

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Pulmicort Turbuhaler

A child using a Pulmicort Turbuhaler.
Asthma Photos A child using a Pulmicort Turbuhaler. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

A child using a Pulmicort Flexhaler.

The Pulmicort Flexhaler is a steroid dry powder inhaler that can help prevent asthma attacks if used daily.

12
Asmanex

A child using Asmanex to help prevent asthma attacks.
Asthma Photos A child using Asmanex to help prevent asthma attacks. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

A child using Asmanex to help prevent asthma attacks.

Asmanex is another steroid dry powder inhaler that can be used to help prevent asthma attacks if it is used daily, even when your child isn't having any asthma symptoms.

13
Using a Peak Flow Meter

A child using a peak flow meter.
Asthma Photos A child using a peak flow meter. (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

A child using a peak flow meter to see how well his asthma is being controlled.

A peak flow meter is a good way to help you monitor how well your child's asthma is doing.

With an asthma action plan, your child's peak flow will also help you know when your asthmatic child needs his asthma medications.

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Preschool Peak Flow Meter

A Preschooler Using a Peak Flow Meter
Asthma Photos A Preschooler Using a Peak Flow Meter. (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

A preschooler using a peak flow meter, a time when most kids are too young to do correctly.

Although some preschoolers can use a peak flow meter correctly, this is usually a time when you need to use a symptom based asthma management plan to understand how well your child's asthma is being controlled. You can try using a peak flow meter under the guidance of your pediatrician though, and with some practice, you might get accurate readings and begin to use peak flows in your child's asthma management.

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Too Young for Peak Flow Meter?

Too Young for a Peak Flow Meter
Asthma Photos This preschool age child is likely too young to be using a peak flow meter. Photo (c) 2007 Vincent Iannelli, MD licensed to About.com, Inc.

You can try using a peak flow meter under the guidance of your pediatrician, although many preschoolers are too young to do it right.

You can try using a peak flow meter under the guidance of your pediatrician, and with some practice, you might get accurate readings and begin to use peak flows in your child's asthma management.

Keep in mind that not all asthma experts agree that you should regularly use a peak flow meter when managing your child's asthma. This is likely surprising to some parents, but the reason is that some experts think that parents get so caught up in the peak flow readings that they overlook their child's asthma symptoms. They think that a symptom based asthma treatment plan might be best for kids, so that you don't withhold an asthma treatment when your child is coughing and wheezing, just because he has a normal peak flow reading.

Anyway, it can be hard to get kids and parents to do peak flows regularly enough to make them very useful.

If you understand that peak flows are simply an extra tool that can help you to understand how well your child's asthma is being controlled and you still look for his asthma symptoms, then doing peak flows will likely be helpful for you and your child.

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