Asthma Management

Asthma Management

Asthma ManagementOver two million Australians have currently diagnosed asthma. The prevalence of asthma in Australia is relatively high, by international standards: 11 to 13 per cent of children have asthma (one in eight to nine children), and nine to 11 per cent of adults have asthma (one in 10 adults).

Asthma can usually be controlled with effective clinical care, appropriate medications, and by following a written asthma action plan. Asthma can, however, be fatal, so it is important to understand what can be done to help.

With good management, people with asthma can lead normal, active lives. The pharmacists at Mater Pharmacy can help you manage your asthma by clearly explaining how your medications work and discussing avoiding possible triggers.

What is asthma?

Asthma is a reversible narrowing of the airways in the lungs.

What are the symptoms of asthma?

  • Wheeze
  • Chest tightness
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty breathing

What is happening inside me when I have asthma?

Two physical changes occur in the lungs during an asthma attack:

  1. Muscle constriction—where the muscles around the airways tighten which narrows the passage through the airways.
  2. Inflammation—the tissue on the inside of the airways swells which narrows the passage through the airways. Increased mucous production; the already narrowed airways become filled with mucous.

Asthma is a health condition that can be managed by:

  • reliever medications—to reverse the muscle constriction in the airways
  • preventer medications—to reduce the inflammation
  • combination medications—contain a symptom controller and preventer
  • avoiding triggers

If you have been prescribed a medication device the pharmacists will ensure you know how to use the medication device correctly. It is very important that the maximum amount of medication reaches the lungs where it will go to work reducing your symptoms and help you breathe easier.

What is an Asthma Action Plan?

An asthma action plan is written instructions from your doctor on what treatment/s you should follow according to the level of symptoms experienced. The aim of an asthma action plan is to help you take early action to prevent or reduce the severity of an asthma attack. People with asthma and/or their carers should ask their doctor about developing an asthma action plan if they do not already have one.

Asthma can be controlled with good management. Discuss your asthma with the pharmacists at Mater Pharmacy today, so they can help you lead a normal active life.

For more information about asthma management, or to find out more about the activities focusing on this health issue, come into a Mater Pharmacy any time for a chat with one of our pharmacists.

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