No. I am not questioning your integrity or how well you can keep a secret, I am asking a question with far more importance!
Do you form a tight seal around your inhaler when taking a puff? or measuring your peak flow?
I hope the answer is yes, but I know in reality there will be some shaking their head in disagreement. Its not your fault, many asthmatics are simply prescribed the medications and expected to read the leaflet in the box or learn how to take the medication themselves.
I have seen people simply puff the inhaler into their open mouth, this allows the medication to swirl in the mouth, also not holding your breathe for a count of 10 reducing the amount of pressure in your lungs to force the medication deep in the lungs. These two very common mistakes mean less then 10% of the medication is entering the lung correctly.
Imagine applying eye drops on your forehead, your eyes may get a little trickle of the medication, but he majority of the medicine is wasted.
Incorrect technique has several repercussions:
- side effects: if the medication stays in the mouth, this can cause ulcers. It is advised to rinse your mouth after a puff, to reduce this risk.
- over dose: as such little of the medication is reaching your lungs, you will require more to feel the effects of 1 correct puff
- misdiagnosed conditions: Your doctors will see your taking more inhalers and may diagnose you with severe or unmanageable asthma
- extra cost: if you pay for your prescriptions, you could be wasting money
You get the idea…
It is vital to correctly learn how to take your medication, you will instantly feel a difference. It will reduce the chance for your asthma plan to be changed or the introduction of new medicines, or the progressions to steroids.
I urge you all, even if you know you technique is correct, go onto Asthma UK or YouTube to see videos on the correct technique.
There is also a file titled inhaler technique on the weekly wheeze Facebook group for your perusal.
I hope this has helped, as always, thank you for reading my gibberish, please like or share this blog and leave comments.
Take a breathe,