Hi guys - another list for you all 😂! As always feel free to discuss and add your own top tips and advice below! So here it goes;
1. Keep your GP informed and involved to your condition if it’s flaring (as much as you can in the current climate of appt shortages!) - if you’re suddenly getting symptoms, make a GP appt - it could be that you’re having a flare up and a short course of steroids will stop it. Or maybe you need to try new meds - either way a GP can help but only if they know you’re struggling! Also if you’re ill with a cold/virus contact them - they’re a huge trigger for any asthmatic! Keep returning if things don’t calm down until you’re back to normal!
2. Take your meds as prescribed - self-explanatory! Make sure you’re taking your meds as you’re meant to, even if your asymptomatic! If you’re using your ventolin every 4hrs then you need to see your GP, if it doesn’t last that long then you can take up to 10 puffs (but again will need to see your GP ASAP), if 10 doesn’t work/last then you need to make you’re way to hospital!
3. Attend your annual asthma revjew - they take the time to check in with you, your management plan, your issues and answer any questions you may have! They’ll also reassess if they think you’re asthma control is improving (and reduce your meds slightly) or worsening (and increase meds if needs be!)
4. Keep an eye on your peak flow and follow your asthma plan (if you have one) - it’s quite informative as to when to seek help and what to do in an emergency. If you don’t have one ask for it! Keep a track of you PF as it can show if you’re heading for an attack!
5. Don’t be afraid to go to hospital if you think you need it - a lot of people avoid hospitals as much as possible, but if you can’t talk in sentences without gasping or are struggling to eat, sleep or walk then that’s where you need to head - better a few hours there today than a few hours tomorrow or no reaching next week! It’s easy to forget that asthma is a killer, even to ‘mild’ asthmatics! If you don’t feel safe - head in!
6. Take time to rest and recover - don’t push too far too fast - it can cause a relapse! After an attack your are more likely to have another in the next 2 weeks as we tend to force ourselves back to normal as soon as we feel we can, without giving ourselves allowance!
7. Sleep on an incline if your asthma keeps waking you up - it puts less ‘demand’ on your lungs if you’re struggling to drop off, however as previously stated make sure a doc is aware of your need to do this!
8. Keep calm - yes it’s an irritating point but if you’re struggling try not to panic - just seek help! Panic can and will back any shortness of breath even worse!
9. Keep as mobile as you can - if you’re really bad (and have spoken to someone!) try to keep moving - staying stationary can lead to chest infections so try not to stay in bed for days at a time
10. Work out your triggers and try to avoid them - some you can, some you can’t but do your best!
11. Stop/reduce smoking if you do, and try to loose weight if you need too - I know, I know an obvious, irritating point but it can make a lot of difference in regaining control!
12. Keep your ventolin to hand (or easily accessible)- if you’re severe try to keep in various bags or places around the house so you don’t have to struggle to get to it. If you rarely need it, still try to keep it on you or leave it in an obvious place - there’s nothing worse than needing one and having to hunt for it!
13. Don’t put your life on hold because of your asthma - yes when you’re acutely I’ll things have to pause whilst you sort yourself out, however if you’re not, try not to worry about the potential of being ill. Yes your health is important but so is your quality of life - if you want to do something, take the precautions but then do it! (I like rollercoasters but they trigger my asthma, what do I do? I take my ventolin pre/post and enjoy the ride!)
14. Speak to asthma UK if you’re worried or have questions but can’t get in contact with your asthma nurse (or off they can’t answer your questions!) - they are very nice and experienced!
Anyone else got any top tips I’ve missed, or anything you do differently? Either for acute attacks, chronic flare ups or the different types of asthma!