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Skylar H., PA

One day when Skylar was just an infant, her lips suddenly turned blue and she was having an extremely difficult time trying to breathe. Her mom, Kim, frantically rushed her to a hospital and knew that something was wrong. Her gut instinct told her that Skylar had asthma, but it wasn't until after a long struggle to find someone to listen and Skylar had turned two that she was finally diagnosed with the disease. Kim says that it's important for parents to take their child's symptoms seriously and trust their intuition since doctors are usually apprehensive to diagnose asthma at such a young age. Skylar is now 11, and is all too aware of the importance of carrying her inhaler at all times, as well as what triggers her asthma. When air quality warnings spike, Skylar knows to prepare for a rough day.

Skylar has had to be on a nebulizer, an aero chamber and inhalers over the last nine years of her young life. Her mother remembers one softball game when Skylar accidently left her inhaler at home. Skylar suffered a severe asthma attack and probably would have not survived if her father had not rushed her home. More than anything, Skylar just wants to be a normal, active kid and wishes she didn't have to deal with her asthma around her friends.

Despite her struggles, Skylar has done her part to help others who may be facing similar health problems. She held a fundraiser at her elementary school that raised $1,900 dollars and hosted other community fundraisers to get the word out about the need for cleaner air.

First Published: September 29, 2011

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