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Why do some people use asthma medications on an as-needed basis while others use medications daily?


Several types of medication are available to treat asthma and they are prescribed depending on the severity of the individual person's asthma. Depending on the severity of the disease, your treatment may differ from someone else, so some people may use inhalers and other medications on an as-needed basis if they have less severe asthma symptoms. Oftentimes, patients with asthma only require a "rescue medication", such as an albuterol inhaler. This type of medication is only used when needed for an asthma attack. If the attacks become too frequent or if a patient suffers from a more severe form of asthma, the doctor may decide to prescribe a "controller medication" in addition to a "rescue medication". This type of medication is to be used every day, even if the patient is feeling ok. "Controller medications" should not be used in the case of an asthma attack. It is important to understand both your asthma and your asthma medications. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about your medications to make sure your treatment is appropriate. One other note, if you find yourself using a rescue inhaler everyday inform your doctor or pharmacist because this may be a sign that your therapy is sub-therapeutic.

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Answers to questions regarding information about medications or health conditions are not for diagnostic or treatment purposes and are not conclusive as to the presence or absence of any health condition. Consult your physician for diagnosis and treatment of your medical condition. The information provided is not a substitute for medical advice. Advances in medicine may cause this information to become outdated, invalid or subject to debate. Professional opinions and interpretations of the scientific literature may vary. Walgreens' terms of use and general warranty disclaimer apply to all services provided. If you are in need of immediate medical attention, contact your physician, poison control center or emergency medical professional. If you need to speak with a pharmacist for non-emergency matters, contact your local Walgreens pharmacist or call a pharmacist toll-free at 1 (877) 250-5823.

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