Loading...
BYH, some see the glass as half empty. I say just get a smaller glass and quit complaining....

Highlighting your health: Helping a child breathe easier

vidant

Theresa Blount, who coordinates Vidant’s Pediatric Asthma Program, demonstrates how a rescue inhaler and spacer deliver medication into the lungs.

Loading…

Vidant Health Communications

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Asthma is a common condition among children, especially in Pitt County. Here, 15 percent of school students are diagnosed with asthma, a higher rate than the state average.

Asthma can be a vexing condition for children. It’s caused by swelling of the airways that can lead to coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath. A rescue inhaler provides quick relief when an asthma episode occurs.

Far too often, students with asthma miss days of school and don’t feel well enough to take part in school activities. Occasionally, some require 911 trips to the hospital. For this reason, Vidant Health’s Pediatric Asthma Program gives students, parents and school personnel a deeper understanding of how to live well — and breathe better — with asthma.

A key factor is being prepared, said Theresa Blount, a nurse who is coordinator of the program. The first step is to have the child’s primary care provider complete an asthma action plan and a medication authorization form. These are required by Pitt County Schools as well as most other school districts, and allow school personnel to give asthma medication when needed. They also allow students to use their personal inhaler and spacer, which work together to deliver puffs of medication into the lungs in just the right dose.

“It’s very important to have their forms and medication at school at all times,” Blount said. “It’s the best way to prevent a child from being in distress for an extended length of time.” It keeps parents from being called to bring the inhaler to school. In worst-case scenarios, it can prevent a rescue squad trip to the emergency department.

However, last fall only about 32 percent of elementary school students in Pitt County who have asthma had their forms, inhaler and spacer on file at their school, Blount said. To address this problem, she and her team collaborated with the school health program to conduct “asthma blitz days” in the schools. Their efforts increased the number of elementary students fully prepared with their forms, inhaler and spacer on file to 46 percent. Other school systems are following their lead, she said.

Inhalers and spacers are expensive for some families, especially those who don’t have insurance, Blount said. Children’s Miracle Network grant funds, administered through the Vidant Health Foundation, help cover the cost for some.

Unfortunately, some parents use their child’s inhaler because they can’t afford their own. Some children share inhalers with their siblings. A typical inhaler has 200 puffs, which may not be enough to share with others.

Like many other conditions that afflict children, asthma is affected by social determinants of health — the circumstances that exist where they live, learn and play. The Pediatric Asthma team visits homes — if invited — to assess the conditions that may aggravate asthma, such as cigarette smoke, strong odors, mold and kerosene heaters. They advise the parents of ways these triggers can make asthma worse and what they can do about them.

The team’s efforts have been strengthened by partnerships with The Brody School of Medicine’s Department of Public Health and with Legal Aid of North Carolina. In addition, the Blue Cross Blue Shield of NC Foundation has provided grant funding. This Medical Legal Partnership is the first east of I-95.

Together these three organizations are working to help children with asthma identify and avoid triggers that make their symptoms worse. They are able to help families with housing issues from hurricane damage, food insecurities, benefit eligibility and other detriments to health. The goal is to ensure that all children with asthma can breathe easier – and so can their parents.

To learn more about pediatric asthma, call 252-847-6835 or email tpblount@vidanthealth.com

Loading…

Humans of Greenville

@HumansofGville

Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.

Look

September 18, 2019

I moved to Greenville in 1997 and as a poor, struggling college student, my meals consisted of ramen noodles, fast food, pizzas, and bread and water. OK, so that sounds kind of harsh, but you understand the food dilemma that attaches itself to college students.

The only time we could enjoy a nice…

Garlic Noodles (1).jpg

September 18, 2019

Q: My neighbor told me she went to an all-day event last year that was great for people with diabetes. Do you happen to know what, where, when? JS, Greenville

A: I am always happy to promote the Winning with Diabetes Event. Tuesday, Nov. 5, is the date for the 18th Annual Winning with Diabetes…

Kolasa, Kathy

September 11, 2019

Q: My daughter has been diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome. What lifestyle measures can help her? JF, Winterville

A: Yes, lifestyle changes can help your daughter and other women who are diagnosed with PCOS and can reduce some of the undesirable side effects. Chloe Opper, a Brody medical…

Kolasa, Kathy

September 11, 2019

Q: My daughter has been diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome. What lifestyle measures can help her? JF, Winterville

A: Yes, lifestyle changes can help your daughter and other women who are diagnosed with PCOS and can reduce some of the undesirable side effects. Chloe Opper, a Brody medical…

Kolasa, Kathy

September 11, 2019

“Like parent, like child” is an often-used idiom reflecting an individual’s tendency to carry on the traits of prior generations.

In the case of type 2 diabetes, take heart. While it does tend to run in families, lifestyle changes now can help one avoid, or at least delay, its…

Highlighting Your Health.jpg

September 11, 2019

Cucina LaMantia Sicilian Ristorante at 3700 S. Memorial Drive in front of Lowe’s has some exciting news for their customers. Starting Oct. 1, they will be serving lunch off a menu 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. 

They have been open for almost a year and in that time have built…

The Godfather Sandwich).jpg

September 06, 2019

More than six decades after the murder of a teenager became a rallying point for the civil rights movement, his memory is being preserved through the arts.

Emmett Till is the inspiration for both an exhibit and a dramatic production at ECU this month.

The African-American teen was beaten and shot…

090619goemmetttill

September 04, 2019

Summer is almost at its end, but that doesn’t mean you should stop eating healthy. You need to keep nourishing your body with fresh and wholesome foods that keep you fully charged and healthy during the long winter months. Let Bateeni Mediterranean Grill & Cafe at 1868 W. Arlington Blvd.…

HUMMUS.jpg

September 04, 2019

Q: I thought intermittent fasting was a fad diet, but I heard a reputable speaker talk about it. What do you think? RJ, Greenville.

A: Once considered a fad, intermittent fasting is the target for serious research. The results of new studies do not paint a clear picture for us. Connie Zhong, a…

5cff256e6c8fd.image.jpg

September 04, 2019

Q: I thought intermittent fasting was a fad diet, but I heard a reputable speaker talk about it. What do you think? RJ, Greenville.

A: Once considered a fad, intermittent fasting is the target for serious research. The results of new studies do not paint a clear picture for us. Connie Zhong, a…

5cff256e6c8fd.image.jpg
92 stories in Look. Viewing 1 through 10.
«First Page   «Previous Page        
Page 1 of 10
        Next Page»   Last Page»