Asthma is a long-term chronic disease for which there is no cure as yet. However, there are several medicines that keep asthma under control and allow asthma patients live an active life. With the help of these medicines your doctor can easily keep a track of your progress and make alterations to your treatment plan as required.
If you or a loved one is an asthma patient it is wise to educate yourself on the various methods used in asthma treatment.
Medicines for asthma are prescribed on the basis of various factors, such as, patient’s age, asthma triggers and symptoms among others. They are broadly categorized as long-term medicine or quick-relief medicine. These medicines can be consumed orally or through a device called an inhaler. Inhalers deliver medicines to the lungs in the most quick and efficient way.
- Long-term control
The goal of long-term control medicines is to prevent common asthma symptoms such as airway inflammation. The most effective medicine prescribed to relieve airway swelling and inflammation are inhaled corticosteroids. When taken on a daily basis, they reduce the inflammation that starts the linked reaction of an asthma attack. Based on the symptoms you experience, your allergist will recommend the right medicine or combination of medicines to keep your asthma under control in the best possible way.
As the name suggests, quick-relief medicines are a form of asthma treatment that help relieve symptoms of asthma when they occur. B2-agonists bronchodilators are one of the most common quick-relief medicines that relax tight muscles around the airways and allow air to flow freely. These medicines should not be used on a daily basis. If you need them more often talk to your doctor immediately.
- Peak Flow Meter
A small hand held device, a peak flow meter is designed to measure the capacity of your lungs. It helps the doctor in determining your condition better and create the most effective asthma treatment plan.
A patient is asked to blow into the device using the full lung capacity, the meter will then reveal your peak flow number. Some patients record their scores every morning while others do it intermittently.
- Regular check-ups
One of the most effective way to keep your asthma under control is by visiting your specialist every 2 to 6 weeks initially and after that as and when your doctor asks you to come.