More than one-third of the 15 million Americans with asthma are children, and the biggest increase in cases since 1980 has been in preschool-age children (Donovan and Finn 1999). Indeed, most asthmatics are diagnosed by the age of five, with symptoms first occurring during infancy and early childhood (Croner and Kjellman 1992; Yunginger et al. 1992). Although the reason for the increasing prevalence of asthma in young children is unclear, several factors play an exacerbating role in the incidence of disease. These include environmental triggers, such as house dust mites, cockroaches, mold, and animal dander, as well as genetic factors.
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If you suffer with asthma, you will no doubt be familiar with the uncomfortable sensations as your bronchial tubes begin to narrow and your muscles around them start to tighten. A sticky mucus known as phlegm begins to produce and increase within your bronchial tubes and you begin to wheeze, cough and struggle to breathe.