What is Albuterol?
Albuterol is a drug which is used to treat bronchospasm in individuals that are having a reversible obstructive airway disease. Apart from that, it can also be used in the prevention of bronchospasm that is induced by exercise. The albuterol drug is known to belong to a class of drug which is called beta agonists and it works in such a way widens the airway in the lungs which then makes it easy for breathing. Albuterol dosage can come as a tablet, syrup as well as a solution that can be inhaled into the mouth.
What is Bronchospasm?
Before looking into albuterol in detail, it is important to understand bronchospasm and what causes it. Bronchospasm is known to be the constriction of bronchi or the muscles found in the walls of the bronchioles. Note that this constriction can largely happen as a result of several factors. First bronchospasm causes could be as a result of smooth muscle of the bronchioles and bronchi. Secondly, as a result of an inflammation of the airways and then thirdly, as a result of excessive production of mucus either due to some allergic reaction or a possible irritation that is caused by mechanical friction of air and drying/ overcooling of air.
Bronchospasm causes could include lower respiratory track diseases like Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary disease known as COPD, Asthma, Pneumonia and Emphysema which can result in the contraction of the airways. However, other bronchospasm causes manifests as side effects of some of the tropical decongestants like the Phenylephrine and Oxymetazoline which could result in smooth muscle constriction.
Bronchospasm symptoms include coughing, wheezing, difficulty in breathing and dyspnea which is the shortness of breath. It is also important to note that increased respiratory ventilation would in a huge measure amplify the bronchospasm effects.
In some cases, bronchospasm treatment could involve physical exercise with nose breathing which will help a gradual increase in the body oxygen collection. Besides, bronchospasm symptoms could also be eliminated with breathing devices which works by trapping exhaled CO2 like the Frolov breathing device. However, the issue is that any bronchospasm treatment is expected to incorporate and address life style changes that can affect bronchospasm. Apart from all these, drugs like albuterol either by inhalation or in oral form are effective against bronchospasm especially in the treatment of the ailment in young children.
What Does Albuterol Do?
Albuterol as a prescription medication can treat bronchospasm or cases of asthma in children. It is essentially a bronchodilator that can be prescribed either in inhalation or oral form. It helps by:
- Preventing the narrowing of airways in children who may have reversible obstructive airway disease which is also known as asthma
- Preventing narrowing of airways that is induced by exercise
Note that the medication can also have other uses and for that reason it is always important to ask your pharmacist or doctor for clarification.
What are the Side Effects of Albuterol?
The reality is that all drugs may cause side effects even though some people may have none of it or minor side effects. However, like other drugs, it is important to consult your doctor immediately if these common side effects persist or become worrisome. Albuterol side effects can come from both inhalation and oral type of the drug. They common side effects of albuterol include
- A faster heart rate
- Feeling of chest pain
- The heart feels like it is racing or pounding
- Intense feeling of sore throat
- Increased filling of dizziness
- You could have runny nose
There are other possible side effects of albuterol. However, it is important to tell your doctor about any side effect that becomes worrisome.
It is important to note that some medical conditions or medications may interact with albuterol dosage and this is why you must inform the doctor or pharmacist of all medical conditions prior to using albuterol. You should tell your doctor if the following is applicable to you.
- If you are taking any other medication whether prescription or non prescription medicine, any dietary supplement or any herbal preparation
- If you do have any allergy to food, medicine or any other substance
- If you have any history of heart problem like heart failure, high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat etc
- If you have any history of kidney problems, thyroid problems, diabetes or seizures
- If you are taking medications like Linezolid, diuretics etc
Check with your heath care giver about the specifics in order to get the right albuterol dosage forchildren or an alternative medication if they are involved.
Note that albuterol dosage recommended by the doctor will depend on some conditions. They are
- Height, weight and age
- Your gender
- Any other medical conditions you may have
- The condition being treated
- How you respond to the treatment
Albuterol dosage for children over 14 years could start with one teaspoonful three to four times a day. However, for children between 2 and 6 years old, their albuterol dosage should 0.1mg/kg of their body weight taken three times a day.
Is Albuterol Consumption Really Safe for Children?
It is actually safe for your child to consume albuterol. However, it must be directed by a physician. Albuterol can be used to treat respiratory problems like asthma in children or any other wheezing and bronchospasm conditions. With this, your child air passage can be dilated and there would be an increased air flow to the lungs. This will go a long way in relieving any breathing difficulty and also suppressing wheezing and coughing.
It is important to note that albuterol may cause irritation in your child’s stomach and for this reason; it is advisable to administer the drug with food. You should also ensure that your child’s doctor is aware of any of your child’s medical condition. Also monitor your child for side effects of albuterol like diarrhea, nervousness, vomiting, headaches and nausea after taking the drugs. If these side effects become serious, consult your doctor and seek emergency medical care immediately.