Back-to-school time is tough for the one child in every 15 who faces the
challenge of asthma. Myths, misconceptions, and stereotypes about children
with asthma hurt them as much or more than the disease itself.
The problem is growing in schools; the asthma rate is rising more rapidly in
preschool-aged children than in any other group. Asthma is the second most
common cause of chronic illness in children, after chronic sinusitis.
The following resources are available for schools and parents from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.
Are you in a high-risk asthma area?
You can find the 100 Health Service Areas with highest asthma mortality in
the country at:
Select "Resources," then "Asthma Mortality Maps of the U.S. and Local Communities."
How can you help schools in your community become more asthma-friendly?
Find out how asthma-friendly your schools are.
A free, downloadable seven-item questionnaire will help parents and
school staff determine how well their school accommodates children with
asthma. It will help identify potential sources of problems and provide
guidance in making school policies and practices more asthma-friendly.
Get "How Asthma-Friendly Is Your School?" at:
Help teachers and coaches help students with asthma.
An easy-to-read booklet, "Asthma and Physical Activity in the School"
(Publication No. 95-3651) is a perfect companion for teachers and coaches who want to
help students with asthma participate in sports and physical activities. The
booklet covers the causes of asthma, symptoms of an asthma attack, how to
avoid and control asthma triggers, how to help students who take medications,
and how to modify activities to match children's current asthma status.
It also includes a reproducible student asthma action card. Order it at: http://emall.nhlbihin.net/product2.asp?sku=3651.
Integrate asthma awareness into the school's curriculum.
"Asthma Awareness: Curriculum for the Elementary Classroom" (Publication No. 93-2894)
was developed for use with elementary school children. These two 30-minute lessons
are easily integrated into a comprehensive health education curriculum and/or into
science as it relates to body systems and the environment. They can also be integrated into social sciences as they relate to getting along with others and learning about community resources. The lessons include suggestions for math, art, and language arts activities.
Order it at: http://emall.nhlbihin.net/product2.asp?source=&sku=2894
For more facts and statistics on asthma in America, go to:
For these and other asthma related educational materials, visit NHLBI's
Online Educational Materials Catalog at http://emall.nhlbihin.net, or call
the NHLBI Information Center at (301) 592-8273.
For additional resources on children and asthma, based on the research activities of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, go to:
Current as of September 2000
Children and Asthma. Resources from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. September 2000. http://www.ahrq.gov/child/chasthma.htm