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Hottest Months Are Time for Asthma Awareness

As football practices continue through the dry, hot month of August, coaches across the nation were reminded of the dangers of asthma following the tragic death of a young player.

Nearly 6.7 million children under the age of 18 suffer from asthma, but in only the rarest cases is it something that hinders a youth football player's experience.
Coaches should know which of their players have asthma and be prepared. In the event that the asthma attack appears to be severe, it's better to be safe than sorry.

"If it's a severe attack -- if the athlete's lips or nails are blue or has difficulty talking, walking or drinking liquids- - that's an indication to call 9-1-1 right away," Dr. David Callahan of the U.S. Public Health Service told USA Football in 2009. "The other very good reason to call 9-1-1 is if the coach or child is simply unsure what to do. It's never wrong to call, and minutes do count when things get severe."

 

"Our expectation for asthma is that youth athletes should be able to take part in activities without feeling restricted," Callahan said. "They should be as much a member -- and as good a member -- of the team as children without asthma."

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Youth football coaches are also encouraged to look at the "Winning with Asthma" program online to learn more about how to help improve the experience for youth athletes.

The
Winning With Asthma Clipboard Program is designed to help coaches learn about asthma, how it affects an athlete's ability to compete and how coaches can help their athletes manage their symptoms while performing at their best.

Asthma causes repeated episodes of wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness and nighttime or early morning coughing. Asthma is not curable but attacks should only occur when a "trigger" bothers the lungs.

With proper precautions, the condition shouldn’t hinder a young athlete’s ability to play football

http://www.winningwithasthma.org/TheCoachesAsthmaClipboard.html