What Do I Tell My Friend To Do If They Have An Asthma Attack?

This question came in via RoyOnRescue email.  They asked, what should I tell my friend to do if they have an asthma attack?
Here’s my answer.  I hope it helps.
asthmaHi S,

Asthma stinks!  But what’s worse is when we have an attack.  There’s no better treatment than management to prevent an attack.  Avoiding triggers, maintaining regular preventative medications and always having a rescue inhaler available that is not expired and not empty.  If a person is having signs of an attack, it’s never a bad idea to call 911 and then begin to treat the symptoms with their medications.  If the attack ends, becomes manageable and everything is fine, then the ambulance leaves and there’s no problem.  If the attack is persistent and the medications don’t work, one will never regret having called for EMS backup.   Remember,  you can always send them away, but we can never make up for lost time.

If a person is having trouble with their asthma(wheezes in or out or both, short of breath, tightness, having small attacks, more albuterol use than normal, has congestion or feels like their not able to move as much air(maybe they have a peakflow meter and it’s reading lower than normal) they should call their doctor.  Again, if they’re having an attack, call 911.  Don’t rely on home remedies and cold air.  Hope this helps.

Roy

Roy Shaw

Roy is the lead trainer and co-founder of ProTrainings. He is also an EMT paramedic whose opinions about rescue come from many years of experience on the ambulance.

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