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Asthma is a long-term (chronic) condition that causes repeated (recurrent) swelling and narrowing of the airways. The airways are the passages that lead from the nose and mouth down into the lungs. When asthma symptoms get worse, it is called an asthma flare, or asthma attack. When this happens, it can be difficult for your child to breathe. Asthma flares can range from minor to life-threatening.
Asthma cannot be cured, but medicines and lifestyle changes can help to control your child's asthma symptoms. It is important to keep your child's asthma well controlled in order to decrease how much this condition interferes with his or her daily life.
The exact cause of asthma is not known. It is most likely caused by family (genetic) and environmental factors early in life.
An action plan also involves using a device that measures how well your child's lungs are working (peak flow meter). Often, your child's peak flow number will start to go down before you or your child recognizes asthma flare symptoms.
This information is not intended to replace advice given to you by your health care provider. Make sure you discuss any questions you have with your health care provider.
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