Severe asthma is rare, affecting about 5% to 10% of those with asthma. Asthma affects more than 26 million Americans. Out of the 3,500 people who die of asthma each year, nearly half are 65 or older. Asthma affects people differently, and having a comprehensive outline can potentially save your life.
The most crucial point to saving a life is to avoid attacks. Asthma brings with it severe stress and anxiety during sudden asthma attacks. Creating asthma action plans with a primary caregiver and physician’s assistance prepares you for any incident.
Bring your asthma action plan up-to-date at each appointment with your health professional, or at the very least once each year. If you haven’t yet developed your personalized action plan or would like help formulating one, these details will help. Read on for everything you need to know about an asthma action plan.
Asthma Action Plan
The American Lung Association defines asthma action plans as worksheets that sequentially outline care procedures. It consists of prevention and precaution for severe asthma attacks and may include instructions and steps in the event of an episode. Your devised strategy can be either focused on adult or childcare.
The Importance of Asthma Action Plans
Asthma flare-ups can be extremely difficult to manage without a plan. When you have your complete asthma action plan in place, you will be able to make the following decisions with its assistance:
- What medications should you take?
- What is the appropriate dosage?
- When and where to use them
- How and who to ask for support
Include the following details:
- Peak flow meter
- Phone numbers to call in an emergency
- Recurring symptoms
Symptoms And Triggers Of Asthma
Based on the information included in your action plan and the symptoms you are experiencing, it becomes easier to determine which zone you are in (green, yellow, or red).
Symptoms Associated With Asthma
Make a list of your asthma symptoms and what you should do if they manifest. Include drug names, dosages, methods of administration, and frequency of use. Include detailed instructions about how you take your medications.
Triggers Associated With Asthma
Make a list of any asthma triggers or air irritants (allergens) that may worsen your condition. Maintain a safe distance from irritants and any other compounds that have the potential to bring on an asthma attack.
Different Types Of Medication
Your prescription drugs may be any or all of the following:
Long-Term Control and Care of the Condition.
These medications effectively reduce edema and inflammation of the airways. They also assist in relaxing the muscles around your airways. Always follow the prescribed dosage for these medications. You can also procure them on an as-needed basis.
Quick-Relief (Rescue) Medications
These medications have a rapid onset of action. They provide immediate relief when you begin experiencing symptoms. As a result, you feel more relaxed and can breathe more easily. Always keep these medications with you.
People who have persistent asthma use inhalers frequently. Some people may require them every day, but you can also use them when needed. Doctors prescribe them to reduce inflammation of the airways, which, in turn, assists in opening airways in the body. It is inhaled directly into the lungs.
Depending on the severity of your symptoms, your doctor may prescribe oral steroids. It is a typical treatment for acute asthma flare-ups, which reduces swelling and inflammation in the airways. Using oral steroids have been demonstrated to lower the number of asthma-related hospitalizations and emergency department visits.
Peak Flow Meter
A peak flow meter is a device that monitors how quickly air exits your lungs when you exhale forcibly. Peak flow values (compared to the information in your asthma action plan) will indicate your current zone. There are three zones into which an individual can be categorized.
Your personal best peak flow reading, or the green zone, is between 80% and 100%. Individuals in this zone are generally healthy and show few to no signs of illness.
You’re in the yellow zone if you’re at 50% to 79% of your personal highest peak flow reading. A person’s symptoms in this zone may become more severe. You might experience difficulty breathing, coughing, chest tightness, or wheezing.
When your peak flow reading is less than half, it indicates severe asthma. In such cases, symptoms are so debilitating that the person will have trouble walking. People who are in this zone are in immediate need of medical assistance.
If you have asthma, you should consult your healthcare provider and work with them to develop an asthma treatment plan. It will include specific instructions for addressing your symptoms as soon as they arise. You will require the appropriate resources, steps, and information to develop an asthma action plan. Doing this will help you be better prepared for day-to-day life and how to react when an asthma attack occurs.
Seek Asthma Assistance At Imperial Center
An individual’s action plan for asthma should be reviewed annually with their doctor because asthma symptoms and conditions may change with time.
Everyone with asthma can benefit from an asthma action plan regardless of their age. By keeping your asthma under control, you can have a good quality of life.
Imperial Center Family Medicine provides complete treatment for asthma. Our experts can help you establish a detailed, comprehensive asthma treatment plan tailored to your specific condition and needs. Connect with the Imperial Center Family Medicine Experts today to make your life better.