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Asthma is a common condition affecting one in 11 children in the UK which is over 1.1 million children and young people.

Young person using an inhaler

Asthma affects the airways (the small breathing tubes) that carry air in and out of the lungs. People affected by asthma have airways that are more sensitive than normal. A trigger causes your body to make an immune response causing swelling of the airways and increased sticky secretion making it difficult to breathe. Although there is no cure for asthma there are effective treatments that can be used to control the symptoms.

If you have asthma it is essential that you have your reliever inhaler (puffers or pumps) and spacer with you at all times, including school so you can take it when you need it. If you find that you are taking your reliever inhaler (usually blue) more than three times a week you should see the GP. Your preventative inhaler dampens down your immune response to the trigger that causes your airways to react. You should be seen at least yearly by your GP and/or asthma Nurse for an asthma review.

If you concerned about your asthma you should talk to your parents, School Nurse or GP.

If you are having difficulty breathing and you do not respond to your usual medication it is a medical emergency and you should contact NHS helpline 119 or 999.

Useful links:

Asthma UK - Asthma plan download and information booklet

Asthma UK - Young people and asthma