I've had Asthma as long as I can remember. But I've always gone through most of my life feeling like I haven't had it because it's been so mild that I haven't even needed a preventer inhaler... until 3 months ago.
I remember being out with my friend and feeling suddenly wheezy. Now, bear in mind that before this day I probably used my reliever 3 times a YEAR. Yeah, that's how good it was. So on this particular day I didn't think too much of it, took my reliever and assumed that I'd wake up the next day feeling fine. That did not happen. The day after I was at work, a normal day at work, I love my job, it's rare that I feel stressed about it, so this is just to point out that no triggers were present at the time. I started coughing, now asthma has never made me cough before, wheezy sure, out of breath, yes, but never coughing. I've never had a cough like it in my life. It's dry and I can actually hear the wheezing with each cough, whenever I've had a cough with a cold it's always been chesty and productive. This cough is like nothing I've ever heard, it scared me so much. I had forgotten to take my inhaler to work on this particular day so I got an emergency prescription from my doctors and picked up my Ventolin from the nearest chemist. It eased it but I was still coughing all day, and the day after. I thought maybe I had a chest infection so I waited it out. I'd have two days of coughing and one day of feeling fine. I was to-ing and fro-ing in my mind as to what it was, whether I should go to the doctors. I eventually went three weeks after the cough started.
They told me exactly what I didn't want to hear, that it was my asthma. The nurse asked if anything had changed in my lifestyle but I wasn't doing anything different. My diet, exercise, lifestyle, work, home, it was all the same. The ONLY thing that had happened recently was that I moved in with my friend 6 months prior to my asthma getting worse. Now she does have cats and a dog. I'm very allergic to cats, but I have lived with one before for 11 years with no asthma symptoms. They aren't allowed in my room and spend most of their time outside anyway and even if it was my new home environment, WHY HAD IT TAKEN SIX MONTHS TO FEEL THE EFFECTS OF IT?
Anyway, the asthma nurse put me back on Clenil Modulite 200 micrograms. It was two weeks til my check up. She told me it would take a few days to start working. Day 3 into taking clenil, I was at a wedding. I tried to dance and sing to ONE song and it was so difficult that I had to keep stopping to catch my breath, this had never happened before. Day 5 was the worst ever. I was due to go to London the following day as my American relatives were visiting, that didn't happen because I was up until 2am, unable to lie down until I could breathe better. I had taken my Ventolin 3 times that night. I was distraught. Finally on day 7 I felt like things were improving but I still didn't feel 100%. When I had my check up the nurse was very surpised when I told her how long it took for the Clenil to start working and to be honest so was I but she didn't question it and so neither did I, she sent me away telling me to continue taking Clenil for the next three months and I could review how I felt myself and if I felt ok then I could reduce how much I was taking and maybe even go back to taking nothing.
Four weeks ago I upped my dose of Clenil to 6 puffs a day because I was needing to take my reliever more and more again. I hoped that this would make things better. It didn't. Two weeks ago I went back to my doctors and I told them that I had upped the dosage and it still wasn't working properly. My asthma hasn't been keeping me up at night but it is now affecting my quality of life. I told the doctor this, and that I was wanting to start going for runs in the evening but was too scared to exert myself because I knew I'd have to take my reliever. I swim every Monday, I have done for the past two years. Swimming now makes me wheezy. Every. Single. Time. I can't do the amount of lengths I used to or go as fast and its so frustrating.
So the doctor has now put me on Fostair, the same one my dad is on. This made me really upset. My dads asthma is terrible, but even he told me the Fostair has basically made his breathing so good that he now doesn't take it at all.
I'm here because I'm angry, upset and confused. I've now been on Fostair for two weeks and I still don't think its working. I still cough occasionally, I still get wheezy, I have to sometimes take it during the day as a reliever, I still can't swim like I used to. My chest feels heavy and tight and painful every day. My mum keeps asking me if it's actually asthma at all, and it makes me wonder if the doctors have done enough tests. It's like the medication works for a week and then my body gets used to it so fast that it may as well be void. I know other people have it a lot worse than I do but I'm scared at the speed in which this is accelerating. I don't want to move onto whatever is after Fostair. I'm only just coming to terms with the fact that I have asthma after my breathing being so normal for so long. I'm 26 years old by the way, I was diagnosed as a kid but, like I say, I've never had it bad (although I guess I can't say that anymore)
Has anyone else been through something similar, where it's been so mild and then suddenly really bad? I just feel so alone in this and so frustrated that I'm sitting here three months after my cough started and still wondering if it'll ever get better.