Alternatives to Ventolin: I find that... - British Lung Foun...

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Alternatives to Ventolin


I find that Ventolin doesn't really give me any relief - I've been using it off and on for about thirty years, first for asthma then for COPD. Are there alternatives which might work better? I see my doctor soon and would like to be able to suggest something, or at least not seem stupid.

13 Replies

This gets asked alot, and I'll say again, when I'm like that i turn to an age old remedy, olbas oil, nasal inhaler i always carry one, but don't replace Ventolin with it, use it as an as well as, hope this helps

in reply to azaard

Me too wonderful stuff Olbas Oil natures remedy :)

There are alternatives to ventolin so defo worth discussing with your doctor. Do you take anything else?

I have problems with Ventolin if I use too much of chest gets tighter.

I have tried Bricanyl which is a bronchiodilator.

Do you have a brown preventer inhaler.

You can get combined inhalers as well, but I find the separate ones better for my asthma/COPD.

Best idea is to ring BLF helpline when they open next week, they have all the info and leaflets.

The breathing exercise which has been mentioned on this site is good, as well as breathing gently through the nose.


Your doctor or respiratory nurse should be able to advise you of other drugs which may help and go with your existing medicines ok. However.......

I said the same thing once to my respiratory nurse and she offered me atrovent, I found this didn't suit me, but it may suit you, it might be worth a try.

There is Salmeterol also and something else that I can't remember the name of now.

Sometimes the technique using salbutamol makes a difference to getting the medicine where you need it most. I find this medicine is the more difficult to get the technique right especially when the airways have already narrowed, can't seem to get the long slow deep breath the same as I can if I use it before exercise or walking out.

Using a spacer with salbutamol (ventolin) may be more effective for you, you could ask the doc about that, aerochamber is the one I use and the technique is easier I think. The aerochamber is not much good for carrying out with you tho.

I saw previously someone mention a spacer that you can buy, one that fits the inhaler inside which makes carrying easier. This one is not on the NHS though. On another blog here somewhere, perhaps someone who was discussing that could advise you further.

A link that talks of the 'alternatives', (mentioning the real name of the med rather than the brand name):

Another link, lists the copd medicine guide where you can read what each medicine can do:

Hope you find something that helps better.

Happy reading ;)

in reply to Hidden

Bricanyl that was the other one I couldn't remember, knitter mentioned above.


I was given an Atrovent inhaler last time at docs because Ventolin just does nothing for me.only problem is Atrovent seems to make my cough worse,catch 22 I know but because it's not for me doesn't mean it won't work for others.maybe worth a mention ??

Olbas oil sounds promising,!

Good luck


hi i was readin ur blog bout ventolin for asthma i havnt got that im copd moderate,my brother in law as asthma and he showed me a new med dont no the name its in a small white canister for ur poket he said its good sorry bout the name for it ask ur gp ye take care


My husband was given bricanyl but didn't find that much good! But did find using the spacer with the ventolin made all the difference. Take care Tadx x


As others have reported, inhaling ventolin 'neat' so to speak, from the mouthpiece is somewhat ineffectual.

However, I've recently started to use it along with an 'aerochamber' spacer & find a tremendous improvement in the delivery

yes, respirtory nurse at PR told me that you get 50% more of the medication if you use a spacer. Same expert told me that in emergencies you can put 10 puffs of Ventolin into the chamberfor relief when extremely SOB...... unfortunately my blue rescue inhaler is breath accuated Easy-Breathe.

There are still quite a few people out there who dont get the best out of their inhalers. Shame.

Thanks for post :)

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