Asthma aware parents--what do I do? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 06-07-2008, 04:53 PM - Thread Starter
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We are 1.5 months into trying to go without singulair with my four year old.

He's coughing at least a little bit for more than half of the nights of the week so I guess we're failing. We've got his bedroom very allergy proof. I do see a lot of sneezing still. I've only used the rescue inhaler once a week on average--a few weeks more than that and some weeks not at all. This past week we used it twice. I'm using it if the coughing continues (as opposed to a few coughs here and there) or if there is wheezing. But on singulair I don't hear any coughing or ever need the rescue inhaler so it's a big difference.

We see our ped. this week but I know she's going to suggest we do a daily preventative. I think I'm going to ask for a pulmonologist referral but I just want opinions on these thoughts.

1. Go back on Singulair. It controls his asthma perfectly but the risks of anxiety particularly concern me. He's already an anxious kid by personality so maybe singulair is a poor choice for him.
2. Go on an inhaled steriod. I hate the thought and worry about side effects but maybe it's better than singulair in our case.
3. Don't treat since it seems his asthma is mild right now though not perfectly controlled. We aren't using the nebulizer more than twice a week though I don't know if I should be using it anytime he has a nighttime cough and so his asthma is less controlled than I think? I know nothing is ever certain but nothing about even the times I use the nebulizer seems scary for him or us. He's not having problems breathing really--just coughing. He can usually breath deeply in and out at these times without a cough even.
4. Part of me wonders if the night cough is related to his sneezing/nasal issues more than asthma. On the other hand he definitely has had wheezing a few times and his cough responds to the albuterol at least somewhat most of the time. And with singulair there is no coughing even with nasal stuff.

Rachelle, mommy to 8 year old boys! 

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#2 of 7 Old 06-09-2008, 12:59 PM
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Don't put him back on Singulair. It completely controlled my son's asthma so we kept him on it for years. And completely regret it.

I started taking him a chiro and his spine is completely out of whack. She had me take dairy completely out of his diet and start supplementing with dha. He hasn't had Singulair in 4 months and he's a perfectly healthy kid now. No coughing, wheezing, sneezing, nothing. I'd definitely recommend seeing a chiro and elminating dairy before I put another child on Singulair.
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#3 of 7 Old 06-09-2008, 01:15 PM
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My 15 month old gets no dairy (ana allergy) but if we don't do the inhaled steroids twice a day, she gets an attack We are seeing a chiro but just started.
I don't really know anything about Singulair but I was told that the danger in not treating is the possibility of scarring (permanent damage) and that a daily shot of steroids to the lungs is much less harmful than using Albuterol even occasionally.

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#4 of 7 Old 06-10-2008, 06:42 PM
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I would try an elimination diet with common food allergens first. Since I have asthma and have had it since I was 3, my triggers have been animals and food. A PP recommended having him avoid dairy and I second that advise.

Once you get a handle on the foods you might see improvement. I would also seek out some alternative practitioners as well if you can afford them.

If these don't help definitely use the control meds. Your DS can always go off of them someday.

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#5 of 7 Old 06-10-2008, 06:51 PM
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I tried taking my DD off of singulair and she nearly ended up hospitalized and missed 2+ weeks of school . Her pediatrician (who is a bit crunchy) swears on a stack of bibles that it does not cause psychological problems. She is a very high strung child, lots of anxiety, etc....

Many asthmatics do best with an inhaled steroid + singulair. I know there are far fewer side effects associated with Pulmicort VS singulair-- maybe you could try that, but generally people use the combination.

I am in a similar predicament so I don't know what to advise you, except that we ended up having to go back to singulair because the health risks in our case were too great.
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#6 of 7 Old 06-10-2008, 07:38 PM
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have you tried a daily antihistamine, especially if the asthma is allergy-induced. Like Zyrtec or Claritin for the sneezing/coughing? And then only use the other stuff for the wheezing?

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#7 of 7 Old 06-11-2008, 12:44 AM
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We weaned off the Singulair but kept on the Flovent for the remainder of cold/virus season (his trigger) and now are just boosting immune system with CLO, almost no milk, probiotic, Calc-Mag, and zinc (I had read of an interesting connection with asthmatic kids being low in zinc (as well as those who don't eat a lot of meat), which reduces the sense of taste and smell. One of my many worries re: DS is his lack of appetite (and huge dislike of meat) and it could be coincidental (it's summer and fresh fruits and veggies are abundant) but he is finally eating! Just thought I'd throw that out there)

We went on the Singulair to avoid the daily steroid -- and it kept his asthma in check but in the end thought that something messing with his brain and moods (and he, too, seemed prone to anxiety to begin with and so the terrible side effects might have been greater for him) was worse than the steroid which at least seemed a bit better targeted to the lungs. In the big picture, we are hoping to get him bigger and his immune system better able to fight off these bugs that last winter landed us in ER five times... in the short term, we picked the Flovent.

Good luck. It sucks seeing your LO struggle.
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