Asthma UK community forum

Unable to do the career I wish :(

They other day I had a careers lesson and in it we were told by our teacher that if you have asthma, you are unable to join the police or army etc unless you have been clear of using your asthma inhaler for 3 years. When I left school I really wanted to be a police officer but I have asthma and take preventer inhalers everyday so I'm probably not going to be able to join the police. I don't know what I'm gonna do anymore because I really had my heart set on that career. D:

4 Replies

The son of a friend of mine recently applied to join the army but was turned down on health grounds (very mild asthma). He and the family are bitterly disappointed because it's all he's ever wanted to do.

Is there something else you can do within the police force eg on the support front? There must be lots of other jobs backing the front line police?


Unfortunately you are correct in that asthmatics cannot join the armed forces. It used to be that this also applied to the emergency services, i.e police, paramedics etc but I believe the rulings recently changed in that asthma doesn't necessarily rule you out anymore. It would largely depend on your individual condition and their independant assessment. Bear in mind that if your asthma is caused by exercise then such a physically demanding job may not be sensible.

I may be wrong with this, but its worth checking before you give up hope :)


Crazybaby is correct. Since 2004 applications have to be considered on individual merit. It's worth looking further into this as it may well be possible to become a police officer if your asthma is sufficiently well controlled. It might also be helpful to discuss this with your GP.

[links to:]

I did a quick google search using the terms ""police asthma"" and the following links might also be useful:

Good luck!


I am currently a Highways Agency Traffic Officer and I also studied Public Services at college. Whilst I was at college we used to train with the marines and all took the Army / Police and Fire entry courses. Yes, applying to be a Fire officer you will be turned down immediately. However, within the police, if you are able to pass their physical exam, I think it is a bleep test and a five minute mile, you shouldn't have any problems. I plan on becoming a Police officer in the next few years. Currently I have quite a bad case of asthma, but I plan on making myself so fit, I feel I should be able to brush it aside and achieve my goal. Because asthma is a very common illness, different people have different stages. When you take the medical, they will be able to see if you have mild or serious asthma. I have 2 friends in the force who have a mild case of asthma. As long as they pass their medical each year, they have nothing to worry about.


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