A worsening of your child’s asthma caused by exposure to one of their triggers. These vary between children but the most common ones are coughs and colds, cold weather, cigarette smoke, pet fur or feathers and pollen.
Over the next few days, your child will need to be regularly given a blue (salbutamol) reliever inhaler.
Dose of blue (salbutamol) reliever inhaler via Spacer:
Today ....... puffs, ....... hourly for first ....... day(s)
Then ....... puffs, ....... hourly for next ....... day(s)
Then ....... puffs, ....... hourly until symptoms improve
after which your child should be back to normal and you should be able to stop the blue inhaler.
In the event that your child has been started on steroid tablets, these should be continued once daily (usual treatment course is 3 days).
If your child becomes increasingly breathless despite following the plan above, you should follow the instructions outlined in the table below.
You should continue your child’s normal preventer treatment(s) during an acute exacerbation of asthma.
At the start of cold symptoms (such as runny nose), begin your child on blue (salbutamol) reliever inhaler 2 puffs 4
hourly (including through the night).
If your child is:
Give 10 puffs of blue (salbutamol) reliever inhaler
every 10 minutes until ambulance arrives.
Keep child in upright position and reassure them.
If your child is:
Increase blue (salbutamol) reliever inhaler 6-10 puffs
every 4 hours
If your child starts to cough, wheeze or has a tight chest but can
continue day to day activities
Give 2-5 puffs blue (salbutamol) reliever inhaler every 4 hours until symptoms improve.
Choose appropriate sized spacer with mask (or mouthpiece if child is over 3 years with good technique and is not
significantly short of breath).
Repeat steps 1 – 5 for subsequent doses
Plastic spacers should be washed before 1st use and every month as per manufacturer’s
Click here for videos on inhaler technique.
If your child has been discharged from hospital, you should arrange for them to be seen in the next 48 hours by your GP
or GP practice nurse.