An Aerochamber, and an inhaler…

  1. Construction works had just begun outside our apartment and everyone had been complaining about dust settling over the floor and furniture etc. I’m very sure it’s the fine dust that triggered his cough because his coughs started at around the same time,
  2. We’ve been living here for more than 5 years but Hubby and he recently started sneezing and coughing each time they are home,
  3. The other apartment faces a main road and an elevated highway: the fumes and the noise of buses, cars, motorbikes assault my senses EVERY minute of the day. I cannot leave the balcony door open because I’ll get dust and most likely, polluted air, which means we need to use the air-conditioner almost all the time.
  4. I hate the air-conditioner and prefer fresh air and a fan but the boy sweats like crazy – he needs to keep cool but the air-conditioner (not to mention the centuries-old dust trapped in it) makes him cough.

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When the boy’s cough didn’t get better after more than 2 weeks (Rhinathiol + Ventolin syrup + Polaramine syrup), which I wasn’t really regular in giving due to to MILLIONS of things I’ve had to rush for the past few weeks, we brought him in to see his paed.

I really wasn’t prepared for what she told me (mostly because I had the baby trying to crawl up and down my chest and the boy was talking and singing loudly as he’s banging away on something at the paed’s office):

  • If we don’t stop the cough now, he’ll be wheezing in a couple of weeks;
  • If he’s still coughing even after 4 weeks of using the inhaler, we need to take him to a doctor who will decide if he needs to continue it;
  • If we don’t stop the cough, it may escalate into asthma.

She also prescribed:

  1. Prospan Cough Syrup (sugar-free, alcohol-free, colorant-free) – a triple action cough syrup that liquefies thick mucus, opens up constricted airways and calms coughing. Prospan® combats the typical complaints of bronchitis (increased formation of viscous mucus, shortness of breath and irritation of the throat). Troublesome and painful coughing is calmed, but not blocked, which is important for being able to cough up the mucus and thereby allow for trouble-free deep breathing.
  2. Bricanyl (Terbutaline Sulphate)0.3 mg (5 ml 3 times a day) – to treat bronchospasm (wheezing, shortness of breath) associated with lung diseases such as asthma, bronchitis, and emphysema.
  3. Piriton (Chlorpheniramine) 4 mg (5 ml 3 times a day) – to treat sneezing, itching, watery eyes, and runny nose

Then, she started to demonstrate to me the way to snap the inhaler onto the Spacer for Kids Medium Size Completely Sealed Clean Fit All Size (Child)

The doctor also showed him the way to grip the inhaler properly and give it one puff (max of 6 minutes for the child to inhale the medication in dispersed powder form), that I had to give him 2 puffs in the morning and 2 puffs at night. He has to take 10 breaths – count the breaths by looking at the diaphragm.

‘How to Use an Inhaler with an Aerochamber’ (Source)

It was really weird because I was focused on her, trying to remember all the numbers but my eyes started to water and tears rolled down my cheeks.

I couldn’t explain it at all but this must have been the biggest blow of all – since the day I knew I was expecting a boy, I did all I could (especially to try to breastfeed him for as long as a year) to prevent the onset of asthma, which runs on both sides of my family.

My father’s asthma

My father had asthma and would tell me about how terrible his childhood and boyhood days were whenever he had an asthma attack – he was an athletic and gregarious person.

The worst feeling in the world is wheezing (trying hard to breathe with a raspy sound coming through your mouth) – the awful memories of my late father wheezing flooded my mind when I heard the word “asthma”.

I just can’t imagine my little boy experiencing that especially as he’s such an ACTIVE boy:

  1. He does not walk. He bounces, jogs, skips or runs.
  2. He cannot sit still unless he has a good book in his hands, an engaging activity and of course, a good show on the TV.
  3. He does not lie still before he sleeps at night. He has to roll around, bug his little sister, bug me, rap his legs on the wall and God knows what else that drives his peace-loving Mom ups the wall before he knocks out for the night.

When the pediatrician saw my tears, she stopped the explanation and gently told me no, he’s not asthmatic yet.

She knows my worst fears but she did say that his cough is probably due to a dust or pollen allergy.

I told Hubby I really *cannot survive* spending another day in this horrible place. We are looking for another place and we hope that we can get a place near trees or near the serene-looking lake we had before.

The boy was immediately fascinated by the aero-chamber and the ped praised him for catching on to the mechanics of attaching the inhaler so quickly. Our math and mechanical whiz 🙂

He’s been able to stay still while I wait for the first 10 counts and next 10 counts of breaths the first day I administered it.

The next day, he started doing his twitching and face making antics. Sigh.

I can’t help thinking that life is like a see-saw: when one end of your life goes up, the other end goes down. It really takes a lot of fine balancing to get both ends up.

Temperature: 34 deg C

Atmosphere: Noisy. Dusty. Polluted.

Essential Oils:

I started using R.C. (eucalyptus, cypress and spruce essential oils from Young Living), which is mixed with a carrier oil like the Young Living’s V6 oil, virgin coconut oil or jojoba oil (depending on your child’s preference).

Eucalyptus, cypress and spruce essential oils support healthy lung and nasal functions.

Rub the essential oil on the soles of your feet and chest.

Before bedtime, massage 3 drops of essential oils on your feet

Just mix 1-2 drops of R.C. onto 1/2 tsp of carrier oil, rub your hands together and gently massage the chest, back and soles of the feet. Put on socks, if needed.

My kids love it when Mummy gives them a massage 🙂

Sigh…your child will sleep soundly through the night and wake up feeling GREAT ^_^

If you’re interested to purchase R.C., Eucalyptus, or Lavender essential oils from Young Living, just click here.

6 comments… add one
  • I believed if it is treated early, it can prevent asthma. Always keep the chest warm at night for the child. You can use Vicks rub every nite. My kids had wheezing when they were young. Now they grew out of it, but taking docs instruction closely.

    Now the nebulizer is collecting dust and I m glad. Hope he will have a speedy recovery.

  • Etceteramommy Link

    How long dies he need to use the inhaler? Turn on those air purifier, it should help with the nose sensitivity a bit. Speedy recovery.

  • a-moms-diary Link

    Hugs to you and him. Hope he’s better now.

  • Michelle – Ya, I rub Vicks on the soles of his feet and put on socks too, which help a bit. I am keeping a close watch on his cough now. I stopped the cough medicines when it went away but then it came back! Have started them again – really hope it’ll go away for good!

    Etceteramommy – He has to use the inhaler 2x a day once in the morning and once at night. We need a humidifier actually for the cold season that’s coming soon 😛

    A Mom’s Diary – Thanks…he got better so I stopped the Bricanyl 0.3 mg (Terbutaline Sulphate) and Piriton 4 mg (Chlorpheniramine) but then the phlegmy cough came back.

    He’s back on them today and no cough. Looks like I’ve got to keep them on the same schedule as the inhaler…

  • DaRLeNE^_^ Link

    I agree that the cough is triggered by dust…in other words, as long as the root cause is not treated, the cough will not subside. If moving to a new area is not feasible option now, how about going for a second doctor opinion? Ask around and see which paeds are recommended and give them a try. It’s worth the while to get a second opinion.

    There’s this one child specialist we frequented who ALWAYS prescribe antibiotics (like prescribing water), even if it is just mild sore throat. I’ve read so so often that many child sicknesses are caused by virus, and rarely caused by bacteria, so the doctor should not have administered antibiotics. I asked around for doctor recommendations and went to a child doctor (who is not even a specialist). I never have to administer antibiotics to my children after I “switch” to this new paed.

    By the way, have you tried Chinese medication? Chinese medication have amazing effect on flu and cough. Whereas western medication will only help to stave off the flu and cough for 3-4 hours, chinese medication cures the root problem. Just sharing because I know and have seen how good Chinese medication can be. **got too carried away,…my point is just go for a second opinion** I pray you’ll find the cure to boy-boy’s cough.

  • Darlene – What Chinese medication could I try? I dare not try because there are so many snake oil salesmen (and saleswomen) around. I’d be happy to hear more about something that’s tried and tested and only if it’s the same as what the boy’s experiencing. Hubby isn’t too keen either because TCM has a lot of fakes nowadays.

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