Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Is there something smaller than an inhaler that I can keep with me for my asthma?"
I'm 21 and go out a lot with my sorority sisters. I have asthma, and I don't always want to carry my inhaler. Is there something smaller? Something else I should use?
An important part of safety when people have asthma is to always carry an albuterol inhaler with them. Albuterol is a rapid acting medicine that dilates the tubes in the lungs and therefore is used to treat acute attacks of asthma. You should never be without it. Asthma inhalers are extremely small and inconspicuous, and unfortunately there is no alternative to carrying one. However, I do recommend talking with your doctor about your asthma. This is because the fact that you are noticing that you need your inhaler when you go out suggests one of two things. Either it suggests that you are going into smoke-heavy or other environments which are triggering your asthma (and need to be avoided) or it suggests that your asthma is not under good control. A gauge for how well asthma is controlled is how often you have to use your albuterol inhaler for symptoms. If you finding yourself using it frequently, such as daily, then this means that your treatment regimen needs to be changed. Usually, it means that you need to take a controller medicine, if you are not taking one yet, or you need to increase the dosage or change the type of your controller medicine.
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