Your environment not only determines your health, but it also determines who you are – quiet literally – at the level of gene expression. Read more about environment and gene expression
When you have children, environmental health concerns become more apparent. What’s in the air? What’s in the water? What kind of dangerous chemicals are in the cleaning products and personal care products? Read more about child health and the indoor environment
The West Australian reports that common household chemicals can damage the lungs of unborn babies and predispose them to childhood asthma.
Professor Peter Sly of the World Health Organization says, “We have evidence that everything from the pesticides used on roses to the bleach in the bathroom impact badly on the developing lungs of unborn babies.” Read more about household chemicals and pregnancy
Vitamins and supplements that mothers take during pregnancy could predispose children (and even grandchildren) to asthma, reports NewScientist.
A study at Duke University Medical Center showed that mice fed vitamins similar to human pregnancy supplements had offspring with signs of asthma. The supplements turned down the expression of certain genes, and the lungs of offspring had high levels of immune cells and proteins that predict asthma; furthermore, this effect was passed down through generations in a process known as epigenetics. Read more about asthma and pregnancy vitamins
If your baby or toddler has a low-grade fever, you should resist the parental urge to reach for a Tylenol bottle. Young children who are given Tylenol (also known as paracetamol or acetaminophen) have a 50 percent increased risk of developing allergic disease, according to The West Australian.
Children who take Tylenol frequently have triple the risk of developing asthma and nasal allergies and double the risk of developing eczema. Read more about Tylenol and asthma
Asthma affects 11% of school-age children, and it will cause them to miss some 13 million days of school this year!
The American Lung Association has released the following back to school asthma checklist to help parents ensure that their child’s asthma doesn’t interfere with academics:
- Schedule an asthma check-up: Even if your child’s condition is well controlled, meeting with your pediatrician is also an opportunity to evaluate medications and physical activity restrictions.