6 Steps Towards Better Asthma Control

Asthma can be overwhelming

Asthma and Anxiety
Asthma Can Be Overwhelming. Brand X Pictures

Asthma can be overwhelming. Sometimes there can seem like so much to do that we really don’t do anything. A plan or roadmap is often necessary to achieve this. The following 6 steps can help you move forward towards better asthma control.

Step 1-Know The Signs and Symptoms of Asthma

The Signs and Symptoms of Asthma
Know The Signs and Symptoms of Asthma. Pat Bass

Asthma control is very difficult if you don’t know the signs and symptoms. At a very basic level asthma is a chronic, inflammatory condition. Your lungs become very sensitive as a result of this inflammation, and triggers can lead to asthma symptoms such as:

The signs and symptoms of asthma not always easy to identify. There is a saying “not all that wheezes his asthma” demonstrating a number of other disease processes can lead to asthma “like” symptoms. However, it’s not always easy to identify asthma symptoms.

Step 2- Know And Avoid Your Asthma Triggers

Know & Avoid Your Asthma Triggers
Know & Avoid Your Asthma Triggers. Pat Bass

Asthma can be very different for different people. What causes one person’s asthma to flare may not bother another asthmatic at all. This is not always easy to see and sometimes you really need to act like a sleuth in order to figure it out.

One way to do this is to keep records when you develop asthma symptoms or decreases in your FEV1. By identifying the times or places where he developed asthma symptoms, you or your doctor may be able to more easily identify a cause. Common asthma triggers include:

Step 3-Take Your Medicine As Directed

Take Your Medication As Directed
Take Your Medication As Directed. Pat Bass

Too many people with asthma fail to take their medicine as directed. While there are number of different reasons for this, it is one of the most important factors that can improve  your asthma control. If your controller medication does not get to your lungs, it can’t do its job to prevent an asthma attack.

In order to take your medicines correctly, we need to understand the purpose of each medication. In general, your asthma medicines will either be a:

Controller medication will be taken daily no matter how you feel. Your quick relief medication, on the other hand, is taken when you develop acute asthma symptoms. How and when you take your medication  is outlined in your asthma action plan. This documented is your roadmap to your asthma control and needs to be reviewed with your doctor periodically.

Step 4-Monitor Your Asthma

Monitor Your Asthma
Monitor Your Asthma. Pat Bass

That which you do not measure, you cannot change. Asthma is no different. You need to frequently monitor asthma symptoms so that you can identify poor control and take action before an asthma attack. This will include things like monitoring how frequently you cough or measuring your FEV1. A monitoring plan should be part of your asthma action plan.

Step 5-Know When an Asthma Attack Is Occurring & What To Do

Know When and What To Do
Know When and What To Do. Pat Bass

This is another important reason to have an asthma action plan. If you have thought about and planned for an asthma attack, your less likely to panic or not know what to do if one occurs. As previously stated, your asthma action plan is a roadmap. It will instruct you about how to take your medicines based on the amount of symptoms you’re having as well as telling you when it’s time to call your doctor for advice, or head to the emergency room for acute treatment.

Step 6-Increase Your Knowledge

Increase your Knowledge
Increase your Knowledge. Pat Bass

Just as your doctor needs to read to keep up with the latest asthma information, he should also increase her knowledge about asthma. You can check out a number of great asthma resources on the.com site or ask your doctor for an “asthma information prescription” to learn where he should go to increase her basic metabolic.


National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Expert Panel Report 3 (EPR3): Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Management of Asthma Accessed on December  15, 2015.

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