Keep your asthma under control during the coronavirus pandemic

Tuesday 5th May is World Asthma Day. While there is no specific data as yet to suggest that people with asthma are at a higher risk of contracting the COVID-19 nor experiencing a more serious illness if they get it, Asthma Australia and Ochre Health encourage anybody with asthma, as well as their families and communities, to do everything they can to protect themselves and others.

If you suffer from asthma, one of the best things you can do to reduce your risk is to optimise your asthma control. When it comes to managing your asthma, Asthma Australia and Ochre Health recommend the following checklist:

  • Ensure you are taking your preventer medicine as prescribed
  • Ensure your technique for using your preventer and reliever device is correct and has been checked by your doctor, nurse or pharmacist
  • Obtain, update and use your written  Asthma Action Plan.  This will provide instructions for when and how you should adjust your treatment if your symptoms worsen and also when you should seek medical assistance
    Maintain good overall health and wellbeing, including managing any other long term conditions you may have and also focusing on important general health areas like nutrition, exercise and stress management
  • Talk to your GP via a telehealth appointment or in person if you think your medication needs adjusting or if you don’t have a written Asthma Action Plan
  • Ensure you always have access to a reliever puffer and spares, for example when you leave the house or when you are at work or at school (if you are not undertaking those activities from home)
  • Ensure you can identify  asthma symptoms  and can treat them properly, including having a basic understanding of asthma first aid
  • Ensure you understand what your  asthma trigger s are and how you can manage them, including allergies, cold weather, smoke, pets and others
  • If you have allergies like hay fever, make sure you’re on the right treatment for them
  • Tell your family and friends you have asthma and make sure they also know your triggers as well as how to provide asthma first aid.

Talk to your Ochre Health doctor or call Asthma Australia on  1800 ASTHMA (278 462) if you have any questions about your asthma or the above checklist. If you need an in-person appointment, Ochre Medical Centres have comprehensive systems and processes in place to protect patients, including screening for any flu-like symptoms, social distancing and a strong focus on hygiene.

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