Asthma is quite common and can be triggered anytime and the least you expect it. There are lots of things that can trigger asthma like dust, smoke, weather, climate, food or probably any other allergens. The most common and the most dangerous symptom of an asthma attack is difficulty in breathing. My pulmonologist explained to me that the airways usually get swollen and it makes it hard for air to pass through thus, the difficulty in breathing. He also told me that asthma doesn’t usually get cured completely and it can only be controlled.
But what if you don’t know you have asthma and suddenly you had an attack? Or what if you’re having a severe asthma attack and can’t breathe and want to take more than what’s prescribed by the doctor assuming you would feel better? Take extra precautions when taking asthma medicines.
Per my pulmonologist, there are 2 main types of asthma medication. We have the reliever which makes breathing easier by expanding the width of the airways which are also often called bronchodilators. The next one is the controller. This is for long term maintenance.
Pulmonologists would most likely instruct you to take these controllers even when you’re not feeling anything bad or even if you’re breathing normally. These controllers will lessen the risk of having another asthma attack and usually encompass steroids. A lot of asthma medicines can be both reliever and controller.
Taking any of these without proper prescription can have adverse effects such as circulatory disorders or heart ailments. Do not take just any asthma medication over the counter. It may or may not work so don’t take the risk.
The same concept can be applied to those who are already taking maintenance. Do not modify the instructions given to you. Do not change the dosage yourself and do not change medicines just because you saw something cheaper and similar. This could affect your maintenance and could cause asthma attacks to reemerge or probably worsen. It happened to me 2 days ago so please follow what your doctor told you to do.
The doctors will know what kind of asthma medication/s to give you and how you should take them. It is understandable that you’d probably panic a bit if you are having sudden difficulty in breathing. The best thing to do is go to the nearest hospital or a physician’s office immediately and ask someone to accompany you. Do not waste a single second since the priority is for you to be able to breathe.