How to recognise asthma and what to do during an attack

Study shows one in five people with the condition do not know the six most common symptoms

How to recognise the symptoms of asthma.

How to recognise the symptoms of asthma.

 

About 470,000 people in Ireland have asthma and 60 per cent do not have it under control, which greatly increases their risk of suffering a fatal attack.

A survey published on Tuesday found that nine out of 10 people do not carry an asthma attack card at all times and more worryingly, one in five people with the condition would not know the six most common symptoms of an asthma attack.

In case of an asthma attack - follow the five step rule

1. Stay calm and sit up straight- do not lie down.

2. Take slow, steady breaths.

3.Take one puff of your reliever inhaler (usually blue) every minute. Use a spacer if available.

- People over 6 years can take up to 10 puffs in 10 minutes

- Children under 6 years can take up to 6 puffs in 10 minutes

4. Call 112 or 999 if your symptoms do not improve after 10 minutes.

5. Repeat step three if an ambulance has not arrived within 10 minutes.

What do to if someone is having an asthma attack

- Do not leave them on their own.

- Extra puffs of reliever inhaler (usually blue) are safe.

Symptoms of asthma

  • Shortness of breath.
  • Chest tightness or pain.
  • Trouble sleeping caused by coughing, wheezing or shortness of breath.
  • A whistling sound when exhaling
  • Coughing or wheezing attacks, which are worsened by cold or flu.