Children with Asthma can have acute symptoms such as increased cough, chest tightness, difficulty in breathing and problems with exercise. During such acute asthma symptoms the airway muscles tighten up also called medically as bronchospasm, swelling or inflammation inside the airways and increased mucus secreations. In such episodes the reliever inhaler relaxes these muscles and give symptomatic relief.
These inhalers are to be used only when there are symptoms. The usual medicines used in relievers is either salbutamol or levo-salbutamol. In children the easiest and most effective way is to use inhalers (commonly called as the blue puff) with spacers as discussed elsewhere in the blog. The usual dose which is used is 2-4 puffs everytime and can be used 3-4 times a day. The reliever medicine can also be taken with other route like syrups, tablets, nebulizers or dry powdered inhalers. In some children there might be an additional need to use a short course of steroids for 5-6 days to reduce the airway swelling. This is usually given by either a syrup or a tablet. Steroids used via a nebulizer does not work in the acute stage.
If your child is requiring relievers frequently then he needs adequate preventers to have a better control of asthma symptoms. Please consult your pediatrician or pediatric pulmonologist.