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We still do not know what causes some people to get asthma. If a child has a family history of asthma or allergies, a specific allergy or had a mother who smoked during pregnancy, they have a higher chance of getting asthma early in life.

A respiratory virus, an illness that occurs in the lungs, is one of the most common causes of asthma symptoms in children 5 years old and younger. Although both adults and children experience respiratory infections, children have more of them. Some preschool children get viral infections often. At least half of children with asthma show some sign of it before the age of 5. Viruses are the most common cause of acute asthma episodes in infants 6 months old or younger.

Visit Living with Asthma: Infants and Toddlers to find out more about:

  • Signs of asthma in babies and toddlers
  • Diagnosing asthma in young children
  • How to treat asthma in infants
  • How to manage your infant's asthma

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