Joshua Update

As I mentioned, we had taken Joshua to see an Ear, Nose, & Throat specialist to check out his adenoids. The doctor ordered an x-ray and it showed that Joshua’s adenoids were actually okay and “insignificant” in size. The doctor recommended trying Flonase for Joshua’s nasal congestion, so he’s been on that for a couple weeks now and I’ve noticed a big difference.

Our next step is to bring him to an allergist.

In the meantime, Joshua’s asthma-like symptoms flared up again two weeks ago. (He hasn’t been diagnosed with asthma because he’s only 2.) He spent a day in the hospital due to wheezing, rapid, labored breathing. With some oral steroids and respiratory treatments, he recovered quickly and was fine. I spoke with our doctor about getting an in-home nebulizer system in case this happens again.

The home health supply company delivered the nebulizer a few days ago on Thursday and showed me how to use it. It’s small, portable (it even comes with an adapter for use in the car) and easy to use. I’m so thankful it arrived when it did because the very next morning – Friday – Joshua woke up wheezing.

The weather around here has been crazy. A week ago, we had frost and a low temperature of about 35 degrees at night and a high of 55 during the day. Then the past couple of days has been 75/80 degrees and super humid. Ugh!

On Thursday night, Joshua started coming down with a cold. Combine that with the humidity and he began wheezing on Friday morning. Now we had the inhaler, but we did not yet have any meds. A quick call into the doctor fixed that and I packed everyone up (even though it’s just 5 minutes away, it always seems an ordeal to get everyone out and buckled in the car and then later, back in the house. If you have little ones, you know what I’m talking about!) and we went to the pharmacy.

Joshua responded well to his first treatment with the nebulizer. Of course, he didn’t like it and kicked and screamed for the first 5 minutes, but he settled down for the last half. And it worked and he stopped wheezing.

But 2 hours later, he was wheezing again. And it was worse. I called our doctor and left a message. I wanted to give him another treatment but no one had given me specific instructions if it was safe to do it sooner than the prescribed every 4 hours. I called again. Nothing. After not getting through to anyone for 45 minutes, I started to get scared and called the pharmacist. Thankfully, she was able to assure me that it was ok to do another treatment but if he needed it again, after two hours, I would need to take him to the ER if we couldn’t get ahold of the doctor.

We did the second treatment and that helped. In the meantime, my doctor finally got back to me and she called in a prescription for the oral steroids (we may as well do it at home if we can.) The steroids take time to work, but Joshua was ok. We didn’t need to do another breathing treatment until the 4 hour mark and he’s been fine with only occasional treatments yesterday and only once today.

I’m bringing him to see our doctor tomorrow because I need to have a plan so I’m not left stressing and unsure of what to do like I did Friday. The good thing is we successfully managed his “episode” at home and Joshua is fine. So I feel much more confident knowing we were able to avoid the hospital.  Still, I need to know what I can and cannot do, so we will address that tomorrow.

The other good thing is this seems to only affect Joshua this time of year and only when he has a cold. And this year was not as bad as a year ago when he was in the hospital for 2 nights. I am hopeful he will outgrow this.

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About the Author

Erika is a happily married mom with four energetic children. With a love for Jesus, photography, organizing, and encouraging other moms, she stays busy and definitely does not have it all together.


  1. Jacqui Hodgkins says:

    Hi Erika,
    I’m so sorry you’re dealing with this. My daughter is 6 and about 6 months ago she had a cold that brought out her asthma, full swing. It was very scary but usually easy to get calmed down. At first, we were doing the nebulizer every 2 hours and an oral steroid. The prednisone took a couple days to kick in but helped. She no longer needs the steroids or the nebulizer, we saw an allergist and they gave her Flovent which is for every day rather than an emergency inhaler like ventolin. They also put her on the same nose spray. Having an action plan an knowing what to do seem to bring me the most comfort. Hang in there! It will get better. We will be praying for you & Joshua.

  2. We were in the same boat this week, my son who will be 2 in december was hospitalized tuesday w/ respiratory distress. His O2 stats were in the 70’s. After spending the night in the hospital and numerous breathing treatments and steroids he was released and sent home w/ a nebulizer. This is the 2nd time this year he has been in the hospital for it. He is still wheezing but is a lot better now. I found putting a humidifier in his room with the vicks that goes with it seems to help a lot.

  3. Maryann Dubbs says:

    It is not an easy job, but I am in awe of you and the great job you have done. Things will get better, maybe when the weather turns cooler and flurries start to fly. I will keep all of you in my prayers and heart as you manage this episode also.

  4. I am sure he will outgrow this! I had horrendous allergies as a young child–to EVERYTHING–I did manage to outgrow most of them!!
    I am already a follower but came here this time from the Alexa hop!

    Michele aka MikiHope

  5. My daughter has always had problems with allergies. She also has eczema and asthma. The dr. put her on singulair and claritin and it seems to help. We also have a nebulizer here just in case she needs it. We haven’t had to use it very much though. Hope your little man gets better soon!

  6. That is so scary when the little ones are sick! I never had asthma until adulthood, but not being able to breathe is scary. My son has asthma brought on by allergies and Singulair is the best drug for that. I know my asthma flares up really bad when there are extreme weather changes (like you have been having) and when the pollen is bad.

    I am so glad you were able to get hold of your doctor so they could help you out! I sure hope that his breathing stays normal for awhile!

  7. I’m so sorry! My cousin had horrible asthma. my daughter still has a mild (before it was pretty bad) tracheo/laryngeomalacia and overactive gag reflex. i think she got ‘cold’s and threw up constantly with a cold from birth (seriously that day!) through about a year old. She also has my allergies because i’m still breastfeeding her at 17 months. I wish breastmilk was a cure all, I stopped dairy, eggs, wheat etc for a year in hopes of helping her but i think she was getting the colds from her big sister. anyway, breathing problems, colds, mucus, throw up, rashes etc are all so scary!!!!!! Im really proud of you for keeping a level head! I’m remember at 17 months old how for over a year when she was sick, I slept in her room with her on the floor with a bucket…. and we barely slept… I’m SO glad that is over!

  8. Karen Greenberg says:

    I don’t know if this helps any, but my youngest daughter went through something similar when she was that same age. She HAS outgrown it, and we manage with Zyrtec allergy pills a couple times a year for a few weeks when the weather is changing.

    • Good to know, thanks Karen! We have Joshua on a daily dose of Cingulair and Flonase now and that seems to be doing the trick; he’s doing great. I’m hopeful that we try to wean him off one or the other in a few months.

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