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5 Tips for Using Inhaled COPD Medicine

  • 2020-01-06


  1. Know how to use it. If you don’t use inhaled medicine correctly, it won't help you. When you first get the prescription, go over the instructions with your doctor or pharmacist -- or if you have a nebulizer, with a representative from the medical supply company. After that, check in occasionally to make sure that you're still using it properly.
  2. Know when to use it. If your doctor prescribes a nebulizer or inhaler, make sure you understand when to use it. Is it only for times when you have a COPD flare-up? Or do you need it every day?
  3. Know how much you need. Always follow the prescription exactly. Never take more or less than your doctor recommends. If you have a COPD flare-up and your normal dosage doesn’t help, don't keep taking more. Instead, get medical help right away.
  4. Know what the drug does. You might need more than one kind of inhaled medication. The most common treatment for COPD is a bronchodilator, which relaxes the muscles around the airways, allowing them to open up. There are many types of bronchodilators. Some people with COPD need treatment with inhaled corticosteroids, which can curb swelling in the air passages. Some of these medications are short-acting. Others are long-acting. And some kick in quickly while others take time to work.
  5. Keep track of your medication. Since it’s so important to control your COPD, make sure you always know how much medicine you have left. Get refills on time. You never want to run out unexpectedly. And if you take more than one prescription, take care to keep them straight.



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