Bronchodilator, Long-Acting, for Children: Care Instructions

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Your Care Instructions

Bronchodilators are medicines that make it easier to breathe. They relax the airways of the lungs. They are usually given through an inhaler. The inhaler makes a fine mist that your child breathes through the mouth and into his or her lungs.

These medicines come in two forms: long-acting and short-acting. The long-acting form is used every day to control chronic asthma. The short-acting form is used to treat asthma attacks.

Long-acting bronchodilators should never be used to treat asthma attacks. They are always used with an inhaled corticosteroid medicine.

Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.

How can you care for your child at home?

  • Have your child take medicines exactly as prescribed. Call your doctor or nurse call line if you think your child is having a problem with his or her medicine.
  • Let your doctor know if your child has side effects from the medicine. These may include:
    • A sore throat and hoarseness.
    • A fast heartbeat.
    • Headache and dizziness.
    • Nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
    • Anxiety.
    • Nervousness or tremor (such as unsteady, shaky hands).

When should you call for help?

Call 911 anytime you think your child may need emergency care. For example, call if:

  • Your child has severe trouble breathing. Signs may include the chest sinking in, using belly muscles to breathe, or nostrils flaring while your child is struggling to breathe.

Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:

  • Your child has an asthma attack and does not get better after you use the action plan.
  • Your child coughs up yellow, dark brown, or bloody mucus (sputum).

Watch closely for changes in your child's health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:

  • Your child's wheezing and coughing get worse.
  • Your child needs quick-relief medicine on more than 2 days a week (unless it is just for exercise).
  • Your child has any new symptoms, such as a fever.

Where can you learn more?

Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd

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