chapter  1
30 Pages

Asthma in Childhood and Adolescence

Pediatric asthma receives a great deal of attention in the research literature, possibly due to its epidemic-size prevalence, and as likely to the life threatening nature of the illness. Practitioners in a variety of settings are likely to have children and families contending with the psychosocial aspects of the illness. This chapter seeks to provide the best practices for intervening with asthmatic children and youth, and with their families. For practitioners to implement these promising interventions, however, they must understand the prevalence and the nature of the disease itself. Thus, this chapter first discusses the prevalence of pediatric asthma and characteristics of the affected population, the nature of the illness, medical regimens and treatments, and the stressors on asthmatic children and their families. Following this background, the details of the 22 studies identified in the systematic review that met the criteria of the study are explicated. The chapter concludes with an exploration of the implications for practice, and future research, a glossary of relevant terms, and a scenario for discussion.