Long term health conditions

David - Interview 20

Male
Age at interview: 18
Age at diagnosis: 5

Brief outline: David was diagnosed with asthma at the age of 5 and his mother thinks that it was triggered off by a really bad cold. His asthma is mild and he is not on regular medication but he uses his inhaler before doing sports. He sees a specialist nurse once a year for check ups.

Background: David is a A-level student and plans to go to university. Lives at home with his parents and his brother. He swims and does other sports on a regular basis. Ethnic background/nationality' White British.

Audio & video

David was diagnosed with asthma at age 5 and his mother thinks that it was triggered off by a really bad cold. His grandmother also has asthma. David's asthma is mild and he is not on regular medication. He tends to use an inhaler but mostly when exercising. He sees a specialist nurse once a year for check ups. Cold weather does affect his asthma so he makes sure he uses appropriate clothing when going out, in order to avoid catching a cold which would inevitably trigger an asthma attack. 

His parents have supported and guided him throughout about how to manage his asthma. He was encouraged to take his inhaler wherever he went and to take up swimming and other sports on a regular basis. David thinks that exercise has greatly helped him to keep his asthma under control. Based on his experience he highly recommends that other young people with asthma should take up sports to keep fit and active.

If he feels his chest tightening up he has learned to keep calm because he says that 'fear' tends to make the condition worse. He also tries to breathe slowly and deeply because shortness of breath does not help his asthma either. Sometimes this breathing exercise is enough to open up the air passages in his chest but on other occasions he needs to take his inhaler. 

He has had not needed to take time off school because of his asthma. David says that neither his school nor social life have been affected by his condition. Most of his friends know that he has asthma. 

David has work as a volunteer in the 'Kick Asthma' summer camps and highly recommends them to children with asthma and other allergic conditions.

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