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How to use an asthma inhaler correctly: It is critical to effective asthma treatment

Published on Apr 15, 2011 with 0 comment

Is your inhaler not helping your asthma symptoms?

If you are not getting the desired results from your inhaler, and are still having difficulty breathing, tightness in your chest, and other asthma symptoms even after using it, chances are it is not being used correctly and efficiently. As a matter of fact, the proper use of an inhaler could be the most important factor in the success or failure in the asthma treatment of adult and childhood asthma.

The ability to use inhaled medications for asthma control and asthma treatment is a major breakthrough. Metered dose inhalers, diskus inhalers, and twist inhalers are now the most effective delivery systems for both preventative asthma medications such as inhaled steroids and for the fast acting bronchodilators, taken for immediate relief of asthma symptoms. But, for these medications to be helpful, one has to use the inhaler correctly. If not used correctly, the medicine will not be delivered to the lower airways resulting in minimal or no improvement in asthma symptoms. Unfortunately, every allergist and asthma specialist deals with this issue every day.

Proper inhaler technique is very simple, but it does require demonstration, coaching, and constant reinforcement. It is important to note that asthma in children less than 6 years of age cannot be treated with an inhaler, as they generally cannot use an inhaler correctly.  Devices such as spacers, aero-chambers, and aero-chambers with mask are available and are widely prescribed, but they are not very efficient in delivering the appropriate dose of inhaled medication to the lower airways. Fortunately, many asthma medications can be aerosolized through a nebulizer. Since little coordination is necessary, a nebulizer is often the delivery system of choice for infants and young children.  Click here to find a recommended nebulizer.

To see proper inhaler technique, please watch the following how-to videos:

How to use an inhaler
How to use a diskus inhaler
How to use a twisthaler
How to use a Flexhaler
How to use an AeroChamber
How to use an AeroChamber with mask

Using these inhaler techniques, an asthma sufferer will be much more likely to have control of his or her asthma symptoms, and use an asthma treatment that actually works.


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