We all know that one person (maybe yourself) who is diagnosed with asthma. They tend to sit on the field side during PE class and are less likely to be involved with certain sports. This is because they are afraid that their asthma symptoms might appear when they are too tired from physical activities. Asthma is a long-term condition that affects both children and adults. Symptoms such as coughing and wheezing sound when breathing, sometimes even breathing difficulty is common among people with asthma. We may be familiar with people in asthma attacks who receive nebulizer to help ease the symptoms immediately but they also usually need to use other medicine to help control the symptoms from appearing again. One of the medications used for the purpose of managing asthma is SPIRIVA RESPIMAT 2.5 mcg.

SPIRIVA RESPIMAT contains tiotropium bromide as its active ingredient. It belongs to a class of medication known as bronchodilators. A bronchodilator works by relaxing the muscles in the lungs and expanding the airways. This is due to the effect of its anticholinergic properties. This medication is known as a long-acting bronchodilator as the effect lasts for at least 12 hours. This is in contrast with short-acting bronchodilators as it only lasts around only 4 hours. Long-acting bronchodilators such as this SPIRIVA RESPIMAT is used to help control breathlessness in asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). It is prescribed for those aged 6 and above as maintenance treatment for asthma and not as a rescue medicine.

This medicine must be used regularly in order for the drug to work effectively and for the body to reap the benefits. The recommended dose is 5 mcg which consists of 2 puffs, taken once daily and at the same time of the day. Do not inhale more than 2 sprays in 24 hours. If you use this inhaler for the first time or have not used it for more than 3 days, you need to prime it before using it. Priming an inhaler helps to make sure the medicine content is mixed with the propellant to ensure you are receiving the full dose of the medicine. To prime, simply spray the medicine 3 times into the air and away from the face. A slow-moving mist is a sign that the inhaler is ready to be used. Full benefit of the medicine will be obvious after several doses. Hence, it is important to take it on a regular basis and with its recommended dosage or as instructed by your healthcare provider.

Similar to any other medicine, using SPIRIVA RESPIMAT comes with possible side effects. Common side effects include dry mouth, sore throat, headache, dizziness and sinus infection. If you feel dizzy or drowsy when using this medicine, you should be careful when working with machines or driving vehicles alone. If you experience such side effects or worsening of symptoms, you should tell your healthcare provider. If you have other medical conditions such as kidney problems, glaucoma, enlarged prostate, blockage in bladder or difficulty passing urines, you need to inform your doctor about the condition. This is due to the possibility that the drug used to treat these medical conditions may contain anticholinergic medicine which may increase side effects or worsen symptoms of the condition.

In essence, SPIRIVA RESPIMAT is used to control breathing symptoms in asthma and COPD. It needs to be used regularly in order to get the full effect of the medicine. The act of priming the inhaler is not a must on every use except for the first time or after a long time of not using it. Side effects are usually mild and most people tolerate this medicine well. In rare occurrences, serious side effects such as allergic reaction, breathing difficulties moments after use, sudden eye pain or vision changes should warrant you a trip to the emergency department for immediate medical care.

Living with asthma may be difficult especially to parents when their child is diagnosed with asthma. A person with asthma may need more than one medicine to control asthma. This is where things can get a bit confusing especially for first time parents and patients. Furthermore, there is no cure for asthma meaning a person diagnosed with asthma is likely to have asthma again in the future. Hence, you should always make sure you know what you are doing despite the fact that an asthma attack may cause panicking. Apart from taking medicine, asthma symptoms can be further reduced by:

  • Identifying what triggers asthma to be the worst. Everyone’s trigger is different and it can be difficult to avoid but it is still possible. Common triggers include dust mites, pet fur, heavy activities or cold temperature.
  • Practise active lifestyle by brisk walking and sports such as swimming. Make sure to ask your healthcare provider first if it is really okay to take part in such activities. It is proven that being active can help improve asthma symptoms, improve lung functions and improve overall quality of life.
  • Avoid smoking and places with smokes. This can greatly reduce the likelihood of catching asthma attacks. Plus, smokes contain many harmful ingredients that can damage lungs and other organs in the body.