In childhood asthma, the lungs and airways become easily inflamed when exposed to certain triggers, such as inhaling pollen or catching a cold or other respiratory infection. Childhood asthma can cause bothersome daily symptoms that interfere with play, sports, school and sleep. In some children, unmanaged asthma can cause dangerous asthma attacks. Unfortunately, according to industry experts, childhood asthma can’t be cured, and symptoms can continue into adulthood. But with the right treatment, you and your child can keep symptoms under control and prevent damage to growing lungs. (source)


Not all children have the same asthma symptoms. A child may even have different symptoms from one episode to the next. Signs and symptoms of asthma in children include:

A cough that doesn’t go away (which may be the only symptom)
Coughing spells that happen often, especially during play or exercise, at night, in cold air, or while laughing or crying
A cough that gets worse after a viral infection
Less energy during play, and stopping to catch their breath during activities
Avoiding sports or social activities
Trouble sleeping because of coughing or breathing problems
Rapid breathing
Chest tightness or pain
Wheezing, a whistling sound when breathing in or out
Seesaw motions in their chest (retractions)
Shortness of breath
Tight neck and chest muscles
Feeling weak or tired
Trouble eating, or grunting while eating (in infants) (source)


Medication is an effective treatment for childhood asthma. Finding the right medication and dosage to control asthma and prevent side effects is an important process. Two types of medication are used to control childhood asthma:

Long-Term Controller Medications
Quick-Relief Medications for Asthma
Long-Term Controller Medications for Asthma

These medications taken daily for asthma by asthma sufferers are called “long-term controller” medicines and help to decrease inflammation (or swelling) of the small airways over time. (source)


Inhaled corticosteroids can cause both local side effects (limited to a part of the body) and systemic side effects (affecting the entire body).

Among the possibilities:

Oral candidiasis (thrush), a common fungal infection of the mouth
Dysphonia (hoarseness), usually short-term
Sore mouth or throat
Reflex cough or tracheal (windpipe) spasms
Decreased bone density in adults
Impaired growth in children, generally slight
Easy bruising
Cataracts (clouding of the eye)
Glaucoma (increased pressure in the eye)
Short- and Long-Acting Beta Agonists

The side effects are much the same for SABAs and LABAs, since the two drug classes share similar mechanisms of action, including:

Increased heart rate
Nervousness or tremors
Though the side effects tend to resolve quickly with SABAs, they can often persist with LABAs. The same can occur when either type of beta agonist is used excessively. (source)