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Home Knowledge Center Wellness Library Asthma: Overuse of Quick-Relief Medicines

Asthma: Overuse of Quick-Relief Medicines

Overview

Quick-relief beta2-agonists quickly reduce symptoms. For this reason, people sometimes overuse them instead of adding the slower-acting, long-term medicines. Overuse of quick-relief medicines may be harmful.

If you overuse quick-relief beta2-agonists, you may feel that your asthma is under control. But, in fact, inflammation in your airways is becoming worse. This can put you in danger of having a severe, deadly attack (status asthmaticus).

Overuse:

  • May delay medical care.
  • May increase your chances of having a severe asthma attack. A severe attack can be deadly.
  • Can make quick-relief medicines less effective in the future.
  • Treats only the early narrowing of bronchial tubes without treating long-term inflammation.

In general, you may need more long-term treatment if you are using quick-relief medicines on more than 2 days a week within a month (except before exercise). Talk to your doctor if you are using your quick-relief medicine this often. Using these medicines often may mean that your symptoms and inflammation are not well controlled.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

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