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Camp Catch A Breathe

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June 4, 2003

Albany - More than 6,000,000 children in America suffer from asthma. Some Albany kids aren't letting asthma stop them from living an active life. The American Lung Association is sponsoring Camp Catch-A-Breath this week.

Wednesday was a day of running, jumping, and giggling - activities that many children with asthma try to avoid. "A common misconception is that children with asthma shouldn't exercise, but activity is important for all children's health," said Janis Havard, Phoebe Putney Respiratory Care.

At Camp Catch A Breathe, children learn how to avoid asthma attacks by using inhalers and medication correctly "When I have an attack, my chest hurts," said Danny Green. Green has suffered from asthma for about a year. At just five years old, he already knows that taking his medications regularly helps control his asthma. "Asthma doesn't stop me from playing."

The children received tips on controlling asthma symptoms - tips that may stop a trip to the hospital. "We have seen a 30% drop in trips to the ER from children who have attended this camp in past years," said Havard.

Asthma accounts for 14,000,000 lost school days annually and more than 650,000 trips to the ER. Asthma is also the third leading cause of hospitalization among children under 15. Statistics that will hopefully lower after a week at Camp Catch A Breathe.

Signs that your children might suffer from asthma include coughing, wheezing, and visible chest retractions during normal breathing.

Posted at 5:05PM by kathryn.murchison@walb.com

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