asthma : i suffer from severe asthma. i... - Asthma UK communi...

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i suffer from severe asthma. i have also been teaching for a few years now. for personal reasons, i cannot use inhalers of the mouthpiece for treatment, i can only use the mask. my problem is, when i have asthma attacks, they are HORRIBLE, and i am unable to even talk. it is very embarrassing because sometimes i require breathing treatments at work and i have to sit down and wear the mask in front of all of the students WHILE struggling to breathe, and stop the class. it is so embarrassing to me!!! my students are actually very supportive, and they help set up the breathing treatment and help me sit down and help me breathe, but i just find it so awkward. i guess i just feel awkward wearing an oxygen mask while gasping for air while there are 40 highschoolers staring at sorry for this, i just had to rant 😂

2 Replies
EmmaF91Community Ambassador

Hi sorry to hear this 😞

Feel free to rant! - I wouldn’t like to have to neb in front of people I teach either! (I coach gymnastics and my pump/spacer is bad enough!)

Have you tried talking to HR or your head teacher (or principle if you have high schoolers 😉 🇺🇸???)?

You shouldn’t have to do this in front of kids and they shouldn’t have to see it. Health and safety wise I know I can’t be in charge of kids when I’m having an attack it’s not safe Eso if you can’t talk!

They should be able to set up a support system to help you... maybe assign a teaching assistant to your class, so if you spiral they can take over, keep the class going, and you can go elsewhere (staffroom... your own private cupboard whatever 😅) and deal with it in privacy!

It’s a reasonable adjustment and then you all benefit in times of illness, but also when you’re well you’ll have someone else to help you with the class so the kids get more support 😉

I hope something like that is feasible for you, and that things work out and calm down for you soon


Totally agree with you. It was many years before I let people see me even use an inhaler. Are you using the travel nebuliser? They are much smaller and less conspicuous. However I must admit that the one I have, I wouldn't trust in an emergency. I would always keep the main one handy. On the other hand, I just realized that in a blackout having the battery operated one handy would be great!

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