Mild, Moderate and Severe Asthma: Signs and Symptoms

Mild, Moderate and Severe Asthma: Signs and Symptoms

If you think your child has asthma, the first step is to visit your healthcare practitioner for tests and recommendations (and click here to sign up for the Asthma Care Plan from Keas™ a website that helps you develop plans to keep you and your family healthy and happy). But here are descriptions I consider a good guide to determine the severity level of your child’s asthma.

Mild Asthma Moderate Asthma Severe Asthma
Symptom frequency and need for short-acting inhaler More than twice a week, but not daily Daily Throughout the day
Effects on lifestyle Minor limitations: occasionally missing school or work, and sometimes missing out on desired activities including sleep Somewhat limited: sometimes missing school or work, and sometimes missing out on desired activities including sleep Major limitations: often missing school or work, and missing out on desired activities including sleep
Effects on sleep under age four Awakened by their asthma once or twice a month Awakened by their asthma three or four times a month Awakened by their asthma at least once a week
Effects on sleep for older children Awakened at night three or four times a month Awakened at night more than once a week, but not every night often awakened nightly
Peak flow meter reading compared to a healthy child of the same age At least 80% 60-80% Less than 60%

 

If your child has no more than two asthma incidents a week, and asthma does not limit normal activities or wake your child up often, your child may have intermittent asthma, which can also benefit from asthma treatments and advice.

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Dr. Alan Greene

Dr. Greene is the founder of DrGreene.com (cited by the AMA as “the pioneer physician Web site”), a practicing pediatrician, father of four, & author of Raising Baby Green & Feeding Baby Green. He appears frequently in the media including such venues as the The New York Times, the TODAY Show, Good Morning America, & the Dr. Oz Show.

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