I feel that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to treating asthma. You can see from the picture above a small sample of what we have around the house for allergies and asthma.
My 3 kids and I all take different medication and different doses of allergy and asthma medicine.
Son #1 swears by Allegra, but daughter Kitty likes Zyrtec. I can't take either one because it makes me feel WAY too tired. So I use an over the counter nose spray .
The same is true for our asthma medicine, we all have different inhalers that we feel work best for us.
But with asthma medicines - what works best? Inhalers or nebulizers?
There are researchers who have shown that an asthma inhaler works just as well as a nebulizer for treating asthma.
Do I think they are right?
I get that they are researchers and they have their professional opinions and the science to back it up.....
But, I know my body, and I know what works best FOR ME. There are times when I am so sick that I am breathing really shallow (I can't take in a deep breathe). In fact, if I try to breathe deeply, I will start coughing so hard I can't seem to catch my breathe and I almost throw up.
So, when that happens, I CAN'T use my inhaler because I can't breathe in deep enough to inhale the medicine. But, I can sit on the couch and slowly breathe in the mist from the nebulizer while I try to stay calm. (Staying calm is not easy when you are desperately trying to breathe....)
Yes, I know that a nebulizer takes more time. But, if you can't breathe in deeply to use an inhaler, what choice do you have?!
I have noticed the same thing with my kids. When they were little and either headed to the hospital/or had just been discharged from the hospital, they were really weak and breathing was a BIG job. They couldn't breathe in deep enough to use an inhaler. So, we used the nebulizer.
I also liked being able to give them a breathing treatment while they were sleeping. We had an oxygen monitor, and I would check on them often during the night when they had pneumonia. If their oxygen level was low, I would plug in the nebulizer near their bed, strap the mask to their face while they slept and give them a breathing treatment.
We TRIED having them sit up during the night and breathe in deep enough to use their inhaler. Tried. No dice. Didn't work. They would start a really bad coughing spell, and sometimes they would throw up.
So, we learned to use the nebulizer when they were really sick.
We pack the nebulizer when we travel. It's been to the Grand Canyon, Disneyland, grandma's house, etc. We learned to never leave home without it.
Remember, everyone with asthma is different. Asthma flare ups (or attacks) can be different too. Some are mild and can easily be treated by an inhaler. Other times, only a nebulizer will do.
So, what works best for you? Inhaler or nebulizer? Talk to your doctor and she can help you decide what's best for you. Even if it's not what the researchers say you should be using...you can be a rebel like me and disagree!