Should We Use Over The Counter Asthma Inhalers
As a Canadian, I have little reason to know about Primatene Mist. Yet, as a Canadian who also exists in the online asthma space, Ive learned enough about Primatene to find its presence both scary and indicative of a larger problem.
Primatene Mist is not available in Canada . I even texted a doctor-friend about it, and she had no idea what Primatene was. Things Health Canada does not approve are not generally scary. However why things are not approved in Canada should, at least, be contemplated. They are also worth considering because sometimes the reasons are unfoundedthat is, there is no real reason something is NOT approved in Canada when it is approved elsewhere.
Most importantly, the reason I find Primatene Mist inhaler scary is that asthma is not an over the counter disease. Not even mild intermittent asthma.
What Factors Should Patients Consider In Choosing And Using Otc Epinephrine Or Ephedrine
Despite the development of newer medications, epinephrine and ephedrine remain available as OTC medications. The choice of epinephrine or ephedrine should involve consideration of several factors. Most importantly, the asthma should be mild and less frequent, defined as occurring less than once per week and resolving almost immediately. It’s best to use OTC epinephrine or ephedrine under the guidance of a physician, if used at all. A patient should seek medical attention and prepare to switch to a prescription asthma medication in most cases, but especially if:
OTC ephedrine is available only as an oral medication in combination with guaifenesin as caplets, tablets, or syrup. Use caution when first starting these products since they occasionally irritate the airways of some patients and may make the asthma worse. OTC ephedrine should provide relief of symptoms within 15-60 minutes and may continue to be effective for three to five hours. Continued use of ephedrine, like frequent use of epinephrine, leads to tolerance.
What Are Common Types Of Asthma Medications
There are four basic types of asthma medicines. They each treat a different part of your asthma:
bronchodilators relax and open the airways to treat symptoms such as coughing, wheezing, chest tightness and shortness of breath.
anti-inflammatory medications reduce and prevent lung inflammation.
combination medications combine a bronchodilator and anti-inflammatory in one device.
leukotriene modifiers block the action of leukotrienes, chemicals involved in immune system responses.
biologics are medications that target the specific cells and pathways that cause inflammation related to severe asthma.
Read Also: Atlanta Allergy And Asthma Northlake
What Is A Spacer
A spacer is a long plastic tube that your inhaler fits into. It makes using an MDI inhaler much easier. Your doctor or nurse can show you how to use a spacer properly. Spacers are not just for children, adults can use them too. You can often get a spacer for free from your doctor just ask them for one. Read more about spacers
When To Seek Medical Help For An Asthma Attack
You should see a doctor for an asthma attack if over-the-counter inhalers do not have the desired impact, such as when you do not improve in 20 minutes or even get worse. More than six inhalations a day should also be your cue to see a doctor.
You should also seek medical help if your heartbeat is consistently above 100 beats per minute at rest or if you are experiencing nervousness, tremors, or seizures after using the inhalers. Also, visit a healthcare professional if you suspect an overdose.
Also Check: Can People With Asthma Run
Over The Counter Inhalers Are Telling
Primatene Mist is the sign of a bigger problem.
In the absence of Primatene Mist, 13,000 members joined 3 prominent Facebook groups petitioning to bring back the drug. Call it Facebook Warrior-ism if you will, but this could also be considered to be the sign of a larger problem in the US healthcare systemthe only country I could find where Primatene is available. That problem is, as always, the problem of money.
When healthcare is treated like a business or commodity rather than a right, people become desperate and have little choice but to cut corners. More and more, the corner they have to cut is medicine, as prices skyrocket out of control.4 Primatene Mist may be the way some Americans cut corners in their asthma carepotentially avoiding two co-pays for their doctor visit and prescription, or avoiding paying out of pocket for these things depending on the circumstance.
What Is The Best Over The Counter Medicine For Asthma
- Good asthma care reduces the need for steroid tablets.
- If you need steroid tablets, your doctor should supervise this treatment and you should see them regularly.
- A medic-alert bracelet for steroids is only needed if you take steroid tablets for months or years.
- Its dangerous to suddenly stop taking steroid tablets if you have been taking them for months or years.
- Long-term treatment with steroid tablets is only needed in a small number of people with asthma.
Don’t Miss: What To Do During Asthma Attack At Home
How Is Asthma Treated
Asthma medicines play a central role in the asthma management. Some medications prevent or reduce airway inflammation. Others interrupt the allergic reaction that triggers symptoms. Some relieve coughing and wheezing, making it easier to breathe.
Your doctor will work with you to find the right combination of medicines for optimal asthma control. They will adjust the type and amount based on your symptoms and the type of asthma that you have. The goal of asthma treatment is to have you feel your best with the least amount of medicine needed to control asthma.
Get to know your medications.
Understand how and why they treat and soothe your lungs and airways. If youre prescribed an inhaler, ask for one with a dose counter. Learn when and how youre supposed to use your inhaler and follow your plan to better breathing.
How Often Will I Have To Take Asthma Drugs
Asthma can’t be cured. How often you need to take your medications depends on how severe your condition is and how frequently you have symptoms. For example, if you only have trouble when you exercise, you may only need to use an inhaler before a workout. But most people with asthma need daily treatment.
Recommended Reading: How To Stop Asthma Coughing Attacks
What Is Bronchial Thermoplasty
Bronchial thermoplasty is an outpatient surgical procedure. It is for adults ages 18 and older with poor asthma control. These people have severe persistent asthma symptoms despite using standard therapy. This includes a combination of inhaled corticosteroids and a long-acting bronchodilator.
The procedure is performed in three outpatient visits under moderate or general anesthesia. A pulmonologist or other qualified physician inserts a long, slender tube called a bronchoscope into the lungs and surrounding airways. They then heat and shrink the size of muscle tissue. This allows more air to pass through and make breathing easier.
Side effects may include a short-term worsening of asthma symptoms. These side effects usually resolve within a week.
If you have severe and difficult-to-control asthma, talk with your doctor to determine if the procedure is right for you. Be sure to check your health insurance to confirm if the procedure is covered.
Read Also: Why Is My Asthma Getting Worse
Risks Of Using An Otc Inhaler For Asthma
Self-treating any medical condition poses significant risks, including:
With over-the-counter inhalers, there’s another real concern: They can become less effective over time, but you may not realize that and keep relying on them in a crisis situation.
If this happens and you experience frequent attacks, your lungs can begin to change and become stiffer and stiffer as scar tissues develop. Over time, this can reduce your lung capacity, leaving you weak and breathless with even moderate activity.
Also Check: How Do They Test For Asthma
How To Choose Over The Counter Allergy Medicine For Asthma: The Buying Guide
How do you choose the over the counter allergy medicine for asthma? You must consider many things, such as the brand name, price, and product quality. In addition, you should also consider whether it is suitable for your needs or not.
So how do you choose the right over the counter allergy medicine for asthma? Here are some tips that you can use to help you find a good product:
What you Should Keep in Mind When Buying over the counter allergy medicine for asthma
When shopping for a over the counter allergy medicine for asthma, there are several things to consider. You need to think about the quality of the product, the price, and even how much it will benefit your life. However, you also need to keep these factors in mind:
National Survey Shows Patient Opposition And New Data On Patient Burden
More than 45 million Americans have nasal allergies, more than 25 million have asthma and over 10 million have both. Respiratory diseases take a devastating toll on public health, costing billions of dollars in direct medical expenses, reducing quality of life, lowering workplace and school performance,and can be life-threatening to high-risk populations, such as asthma patients.
Don’t Miss: Do You Cough Up Mucus With Asthma
What Are The Best Over
Some FDA-approved over-the-counter asthma treatments you can get include:
Primatene Mist HFA inhaler The Primatene Mist inhaler is one of the most popular OTC medications for asthma. It contains epinephrine. This is an active ingredient that links with the adrenergic receptors found in your lungs. It causes the lung muscles to relax, thereby opening your airways. In turn, this makes breathing easier. Primatene can only be used by those over the age of 12.
Asthmanefrine This is a nebulizer liquid solution containing racemic epinephrine. It has similar effects as epinephrine in Primatene Mist. The only difference here is that it can be used for children four years and older.
Oral medications such as Primatene and Bronchial Asthma Relief, among others
Asthma Medications And Treatment
When it comes to understanding all of the asthma treatments available, its natural to feel a little bit confused.
The important thing to remember is that asthma is a variable disease. In other words, asthma symptoms, severity and treatment plans can vary from person to person, and even the same persons condition may fluctuate throughout the year.
The two most common types of asthma medications are controllers which treat the long-term, underlying inflammation in your airways and relieverswhich act as your rescue inhaler and provide fast but short-term relief of symptoms. You should speak with your healthcare professionalabout finding a treatment plan that is right for you.
Also Check: Can Low Humidity Cause Asthma
My Exercise Program Is The Best Medicine You Can Buy There Is No Need To Go Fitness Clubs Beauty Salons Or Spa Spend Time Money And They Do Not Teach What I’m Teaching: You Could Do This Program At Home And Get More Benefits
— Doctor’s Oz statement about sex and pinas is very wrong. The man’s good sex performance depends not on man’s height, weight, age or size of pinas, but on man’s health, his physical condition, on man’s ability to control, to hold his muscles during sex. My method of fitness can help to build up back and ubdomal muscles, and a man in excellent health, even in the middle age, could perform sexual act every day and for long period of time: up to one hour.
When Rescue Inhalers Are Not Enough
If you use a rescue inhaler two or more times per week or more than two nights per month, you need to talk to a healthcare provider about starting asthma controller medications. These are inhaled, oral, or injectable drugs used regularly to help control asthma symptoms.
According to a 2017 study published in BMJ Open, people who use over-the-counter rescue inhalers are no more likely to have uncontrolled asthma than those who use prescription rescue inhalers. However, they are 70% more likely to require urgent asthma care within a year.
You May Like: Allergy And Asthma Associates Sterling Va
How Do I Use And Look After My Nebuliser
When youre prescribed a nebuliser to use at home you should be given clear instructions on how to use and look after it by your doctor, specialist or pharmacist.
Using your nebuliser
Always follow your doctor or specialists guidance on how to use your nebuliser and read the guidance notes carefully.
- Wash your hands before using your nebuliser
- If youre using a mouthpiece, seal your lips around it and breathe through your mouth, not your nose
- If youre using a facemask, place it over your mouth and nose
- Take normal, calm breaths as much as you can.
Looking after your nebuliser
Read the guidance notes carefully when you first get your nebuliser, so you know:
- The best way to keep your nebuliser clean to lower risk of infection
- How often to change the filters, and where to get them
- How often the nebuliser needs servicing, and how to arrange that. If you are loaned a nebuliser, the hospital or specialist clinic is responsible for servicing it.
Ask your doctor or specialist if youre not sure about anything. You can also contact the nebuliser company or manufacturers for advice if you need help with the device itself.
Read Also: How To Treat Asthma Without Inhaler
Over The Counter Medicine For Asthma: What You Need To Know
Approximately 1 in 13 people¹ lives with asthma in the US. Symptoms of asthma include shortness of breath, pain or tightness in the chest and coughing.
Asthma has no cure, but there are prescribed drugs that can prevent asthma attacks. However, these can be expensive. While over-the-counter medicines are no substitute for prescribed ones, they can help alleviate mild, intermittent asthma symptoms.
Have you considered clinical trials for Asthma?
We make it easy for you to participate in a clinical trial for Asthma, and get access to the latest treatments not yet widely available – and be a part of finding a cure.
You May Like: What Is The Treatment For Asthma
About The 2015 Survey Update
AAFA conducted a special updated survey in five key states IL, IN, OK, TN, MO January 14 to 26, 2015, among 2,027 U.S. adults age 18+ who personally experienced cold, cough, flu, asthma and/or nasal allergies in the preceding 12 months and purchased non-prescription medications for at least one condition during that time. The survey was conducted for AAFA by Harris Poll. Results were weighted to census targets for education, age/gender, race/ethnicity, region and household income. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents propensity to be online.For more information on AAFAs 2015 report and for previous survey findings, see the links below.
Asthma Attack Triggers And How To Prevent Them
If youve ever had an asthma attack, you know how scary it can be when your chest tightens, making it difficult to take breaths between coughing. These are just some of the symptoms that characterize an asthma attack. Asthma attacks can be triggered by many things, making it all the more frightening when you suddenly cant breathe.
Understanding what triggers your asthma is the first step toward preventing an asthma attack. Well explain what you need to know about common asthma attack triggers, so you can do your best to prevent symptoms from interrupting your everyday life.
You May Like: What To Do For Asthma
Recommended Reading: Is Asthma A Pre Existing Condition For Covid Vaccine
How To Treat Asthma
While asthma symptoms might appear obvious, they are similar to those of many respiratory infections, making asthma hard to distinguish.
To diagnose asthma, the healthcare provider will start by reviewing your medical history. They will ask about any allergies or lung diseases you might have experienced, as well as some information about your family.
They might also ask that you do a spirometry test that measures how air flows through your lungs. Your provider might order tests including a chest x-ray and skin and blood tests. Once it is confirmed, your provider will recommend a suitable course of treatment.
Asthma Medicines And Competitive Sports
If you are an athlete and need to take medicine to keep your asthma under control, you need to know which inhalers and medicines are allowed.Many asthma medicines contain Beta2-Agonists, which are not allowed in competitive sport. If you need to take one of these inhalers, you need to apply for a therapeutic use exemption. VisitDrugFree Sports NZ for details.
Read Also: Is Asthma A High Risk For Covid
Recommended Reading: Allergy And Asthma Frederick Md
Risks Of Otc Asthma Medication
OTC asthma inhalers are quick-relief medications that a person should use as soon as asthma symptoms develop. A doctor may also prescribe them for people with exercise-induced asthma who will need to take the medication before working out.
Inhalers send medication directly to the inflamed airways, but it is important to make sure that it reaches the lower lungs.
As with other quick-relief medications, people should only use OTC asthma inhalers occasionally. According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, if people feel the need to use an inhaler more than twice within a week or on 2 or more nights a month, they should contact their doctor because their asthma treatment plan is not working as it should.
As asthma is different in every individual, some experts recommend against any kind of OTC treatment, emphasizing the importance of individualized treatment plans.