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Link to Full Article: https://aerobithealth.com/benefits-of-a-good-asthma-inhaler-technique/
It may seem a little scary when you or someone you know is diagnosed as having asthma. It’s a whole new world with brand new areas to explore. But don’t let everything get on top of you, there’s plenty of help out there.When it comes to managing asthma, it’s not just the medicine you need to consider but the tools that go along with it. And as obvious as it may sound, for any medicine to be effective in its treatment, it needs to be utilised correctly. The same goes for using your asthma inhaler.Learning the correct inhaler technique is just as important as the medicine being prescribed. So, it’s really important to be educated in the art of administering asthma medication via your inhaler, whatever the type you’ve been provided with may be.Seeing as it’s so crucial to get this technique right, you’d be safe in thinking most patients with asthma are correct and confident in their inhaler technique. So it’s surprising to learn from a study published in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, that a staggering 93 percent of asthma patients had flaws in their inhaler technique. That leaves just 7 per cent of all asthma sufferers getting the technique right.So, technique is key, that much is true. But what exactly are the advantages of utilising your prescribed asthma tool to the best of your ability? Well, it turns out that there are many. Here are 6 of the best benefits of good asthma inhaler technique that you should be aware of.
When used in the way that they are designed to, asthma inhalers deliver a designated and effective amount of the prescribed drug directly to where it’s needed within the lungs. So making sure you are using the right technique for the inhaler you require means your lungs can breathe a heavy sigh of relief.
But living with asthma isn’t always consistent, and sometimes an attack will present itself out of nowhere. Even though there are preventer inhalers on offer to some patients, you won’t always be in such a routine.
Therefore, it makes further sense to take control of it where you can. And by making sure you have perfected your inhaler technique, the next time you have to use your inhaler in a hurry, you can be sure of administering the correct amount of medicine, and in the correct way.
That way, you can be sure of providing your lungs with the right amount of medicine exactly where it’s needed. It also ensures no wastage in medication.
Symptoms are reduced quickly
Asthma symptoms are not pleasant and some are more severe than others. From wheezing and shortness of breath, to chest tightness and pain, once an attack comes on, you’ll want to do as much as you physically can to reduce these effects in the quickest possible way.
Making sure you hold the inhaler in the right position, taking a deep breath as you puff the medicine into your mouth, and shaking the inhaler in between puffs are all good ways to ensure correct inhaler technique.
By putting this into practice, you can help to make those symptoms disappear as quickly as possible.
Saves you money
This isn’t a benefit you would necessarily think goes hand in hand with good inhaler technique, but there are ways in which this could be the case.If you’re not utilising the correct technique when it comes to your inhaler, you may well be wasting your medication. And this could equate to wasting money, especially if you pay for your prescriptions.Even if you’ve had been using your inhaler for several years, it doesn’t necessarily mean your technique is perfected, and you could well be getting more from your inhaler. Check in with your doctor or pharmacist and see if they can help perfect your technique to make each inhaler last longer and you need to buy less.The better your inhaler technique is, the less time you could potentially spend away from work. This report produced by Deloitte Access Economics from 2015 highlights that people with asthma took two more sick days each year than the average worker. This could well add up to a meaningful loss of earnings in the long run.
Less time spent in the emergency room
In one study, improper use of asthma inhaler devices were linked to an increase in visits to the emergency room. Alongside regularly scheduled visits to your GP, this is not a place you’ll want to frequent, particularly if you can do things to help avoid it. By spending time with your doctor, learning the correct way in which to administer your medication, and ensuring you spend enough time practising this technique, you can help to avoid an unwanted and potentially long-winded visit to A&E.
Good all around health
It is known that up to 90% of all patients using inhalers to manager their asthma are not utilising theirs in the most effective of ways. From incorrect dosage and longer time spent suffering with symptoms, practising good inhaler technique also means your health is better looked after in other areas.Breathing your inhaler in too fast can cause the medication to stick to the back of your throat instead of going down your airways. Repeated use of this will make your throat sore, and so it’s important to focus on longer, more controlled breaths.
Incorrect inhaler technique also increases the risk of side-effects such as dysphonia and oral thrush. A spacer can be extremely helpful in preventing these other health issues, and can aid in your technique. When it comes to using steroid inhalers, it’s not uncommon to suffer with a hoarse voice, prolonged cough, and even nosebleeds.
Make sure to always rinse your mouth after using the inhaler, to help remove any medicine particles left in your mouth. By adopting this technique, you can help to reduce these other associated health risks.
Something to consider when looking at your inhaler technique is how long your trusty tool will last for. If you ensure to practise great technique, you can actually help to keep your inhaler in good condition, for as long as possible.
Proper use of your device, along with regular cleaning, care and attention means you will be in control of your asthma. Which means less trips to the doctor.
Only around 11% of patients receive follow-up assessment and education on their inhaler technique and with best practice and good intentions tending to fade over time, there’s not like the present to speak to your healthcare provider and find out the best ways in which you can improve and continue to work on your inhaler technique. With a bit of time and encouragement, you’ll soon start to reap the rewards.
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