The number of children with asthma who need emergency treatment doubles in the weeks after the school holidays and is known as the ‘September Surge.’

That’s why Kirklees parents of those aged five to 16 with asthma are being reminded to make sure their asthma action plan is up-to-date and that they are taking their asthma prevention medicine as directed (usually a brown, orange, red or purple inhaler/puffer).

Three things parents should do:

  • Have an asthma action plan in place which is up-to-date and being followed;
  • Make sure they are taking their asthma prevention medicine regularly as prescribed;
  • Ensure they always carry their blue reliever inhaler and spacer with them – including to school.

Making sure your child is using the correct technique for inhalers is also vital and should be checked regularly. You can find more information on the Asthma + Lung UK website.

Around one in 10 young people has asthma in the UK and a child is admitted to hospital every 20 minutes because of an asthma attack, the majority of which are preventable.

The combination of children getting out of the habit of using inhalers during the summer break, the change of weather, coughs and colds, air pollution and the stress of term starting, are thought to contribute to the spike in asthma cases this month.

Asthma is a lung condition causing breathing difficulties, which can occur randomly or after a trigger like pollen, pollution, smoke, infections, colds and flu.

It causes symptoms like coughing, wheezing and breathlessness but can be controlled very well with the right medication if taken daily and reviewed regularly to ensure it stays effective.

Everyone with asthma needs to take extra precautions during September. Children tend to be the most affected, but adults should also use this time to review their asthma plans.

Dr Khalid Naeem, chairman of Kirklees Clinical and Professional Forum and a Batley GP, said: “Even if your child is feeling well and has been running around all summer, it’s vital to keep on top of their asthma medication and ensure they’re taking their preventer inhaler as instructed by their GP or asthma nurse.

“It’s easy to fall out of your usual asthma care routine during the long summer break but it’s never too early to get back into it.

“Now we are getting back into the routine of school, parents need to make sure their children are also getting back into the routine of making sure they take their medicine to prevent asthma attacks and are following their asthma action plans.

“This includes checking their reliever puffer isn’t empty or out of date, making sure teachers know they may need an inhaler and ensuring they always take their reliever puffer with them.”

Parents are also encouraged to ensure their children are vaccinated for flu and Covid-19 when offered to also reduce the risk from asthma.

You can find more advice on the Asthma + Lung UK website.