An article in the papers says that “federal guidelines due this summer are expected to urge doctors to more closely monitor whether treatment is truly controlling eeryday symptoms and improving patients’ quality of life – and to adjust therapy until it does.” It goes on to suggest a campaign to teach patients they need better help, but does it go far enough? Why do we only want to treat the symptoms? We should be looking at the environment of the asthma sufferer as well. But what else is contributing his asthma attacks?
I was 47 years old when I went from and having occasional migraines caused by exposure too much perfume to having daily migraines. In fact, it was at this time that I learned that they were even migraines. I went through a lot of doctors and neurologists at first. Each time I saw a new one, they gave me a different drug to “prevent” the migraines. None of them helped. And I kept asking, “Why am I having these problems now? What happened to suddenly make me have this head pain all the time?” And I got no answers. No one seemed to care about Why, they only wanted to make them go away. But I felt that Why was an important part of how we would make them go away.
I knew that fragrances played a role, but it seemed there had to be more. Even working from home didn’t help 100%. Finally, one doctor’s office gave me a five page list of foods that are known to be migraine triggers – nuts, nitrates, msg, aspartame, chocolate, and on and on. As I began eliminating those items from my diet, I found some relief. I have since been able to pare down that list to those items that I know are a problem for me. And no, the migraines aren’t gone, but they are less frequent. They now seem to be only triggered by fragrance products.
The bottom line is that we had to go beyond the symptoms to determine what was triggering the migraines in order to gain any kind of control. And curiously, I am now on one of the drugs that was tried five years ago. And it is helping.
Rather than just treating the symptoms of your child’s asthma, perhaps you should first try to determine what triggers attacks and try to eliminate them from their environment (as much as possible). My husband has had asthma since he was a child. But since we’ve been together, it is much better controlled because our home is Fragrance Free.