What is asthma?

Asthma is a very common long term condition affecting children living in the UK.

Asthma causes children to wheeze and cough and can be set off by things like infections, pollen and animal fur or pollution.

If your child has been diagnosed with asthma this means the small airways that carry air in and out of their lungs are affected. Children with asthma have sensitive airways which can become swollen and results in wheeze and cough.

With the right treatment children with asthma can have very few symptoms and get on with their day to day life.

The video below shows how asthma affects the lungs.

What are the symptoms of asthma?

Your child may have symptoms such as:

  • cough
  • wheeze
  • feeling breathless
  • tight chest

These symptoms are usually made worse when they come into contact with one of their triggers. If your child's asthma suddenly gets much worse (asthma attack) they will need urgent treatment. They should follow their asthma action plan.

If you're worried your child might have asthma, speak to your doctor.

In the video below an asthma nurse explains what symptoms to look for in children.

Further information