There are many choices of inhalers available. Your health providers should be able to help you choose the right one for you.
- Preventers reduce inflammation when used every day. They help reduce your chances of getting asthma symptoms in the first place. Eventually, if you are taking them correctly, you won't need to use your other inhaler at all. Preventers are usually brown or orange, such as beclomethasone, budesonide or fluticasone.
- Relievers provide immediate/short-term relief, and help with wheeze, cough, breathlessness and tight chest. Always carry your reliever. It will help relieve your asthma symptoms, by quickly relaxing the muscles around the airways that have become tight and constricted. This lets the airways open wider so you can breathe easier again. Relievers are generally blue, such as salbutamol and terbutaline. If you are using your reliever more than 3 to 4 times a week, see your doctor to check out if other medications are needed.
- Symptom controllers keep muscles around airways relaxed for up to 12 hours when used every day and must be used with a preventer. FOR SAFETY YOU SHOULD ALWAYS CARRY A RELIEVER.
- Combination – a preventer/symptom controller in the one inhaler.
Self-management plans are available with spaces to add your treatment details and peak flow levels. You and your health providers can fill in the spaces to create a plan that suits you.
A self-management plan helps you to know what to do if your asthma is getting worse or if you have a bad attack. It gives you written instructions on what to do, who to call and where to go.
Last updated: 3 March 2017