If you suspect you are having acute asthma, follow your asthma action plan. Keep a copy of your asthma action plan handy and another copy in your asthma guide notebook. If your condition worsens or does not improve, please call the office or your Asthma & Allergy Center doctor. A list of important phone numbers can be found under the doctor’s information section of this book. Keep a copy of the phone numbers next to your phone and in your wallet.
Stay calm and do not panic. Getting upset will make your asthma worse. Use proper breathing and progressive muscle relaxation techniques explained on the following page.
Follow your asthma action plan from your Asthma & Allergy Center doctor. When your peak flow readings fall into the yellow area, increase your medication as directed. DO NOT WAIT BEFORE INCREASING YOUR MEDICATION. As more inflammation occurs, more medication is required. Keep a written record of the extra medication you take. If your Peak Flow Meter measurement is in the red zone and does not return to the yellow or green zone after taking your rescue medication, use your “STAT PACK” of oral steroid and call your Asthma & Allergy Center doctor’s office.
As your respiratory rate increases, you can become dehydrated. Drink warm fluids (water).
Coughing can aggravate asthma or be the first symptom of an acute flare. Consult your Asthma & Allergy Center doctor about whether a cough suppressant is needed. A throat lozenge dissolved slowly may soothe an irritated throat.
Quick-relief medicine for asthma makes you feel better for a while. It may stop the attack. With some attacks, you may think you are getting better, but your airways are getting more and more swollen. Then you are in danger of having a very bad asthma attack that could kill you. If you use quick-relief medicine every day to stop asthma attacks, this means you need a preventive medicine for long-term control.
In the United States about 5,000 people die of asthma every year. The main reasons are delay of medical/emergency treatments, failure to recognize asthma severity by family, patients, and the doctor, and the under use of steroids. DO NOT BE A STATISTIC!!!