Ventolin is the most well-known brand name for the medicine called Salbutamol, which is used for treating asthma ― the chronic condition, when a patient faces breathlessness, coughing, wheezing, and/or chest pains, which are associated with swelling and, consequently, narrowing of the airways or the excess of mucus produced in the body. Such problems manifest themselves from time to time and are often caused by certain triggers, for example, allergens or physical activities. In many cases, this disease starts developing in childhood. It cannot be completely cured, but it can be taken under control, and Salbutamol is one of the most effective solutions that can help a patient to keep leading a normal life without worrying about the risk of life-endangering attacks.
5 Major Facts about the Product
- In addition to asthma, it is applied for treating chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and other conditions that cause breathing difficulties.
- This drug belongs to the group of rescue medicines, which means that it is used to stop asthma attacks after they have already started. For information, there are also preventive products for treating this disease that are taken on a regular basis in order to prevent the airways from swelling and to decrease the production of mucus, which makes attacks less frequent and intense. So, as a rule, patients suffering from asthma are prescribed two different medicines.
- This product starts working right after it gets in the organism ― it makes the muscles in the airways relax, which normalizes the airflow. The state of a patient normalizes within several minutes.
- This drug is applied both to relieve rapid attacks and to prevent those related to exercise stress and some other triggers, for example, allergens.
- Most patients use inhalers to take this medicine. But there are also oral tablets, capsules, and syrups available on the market. Besides, in certain cases, doctors recommend using a nebulizer.
Basic Usage Instructions
- First, you should use this drug as soon as you feel the first symptoms of an attack without a delay since it can get worse swiftly.
- As it has already been mentioned, another indication for taking this medication is preventing attacks associated with exposure to triggers. In such situations, the drug should be applied before doing a risky activity or going to a risky place.
- Patients are usually recommended taking 1–2 puffs (or inhalations) at a time, but the dosage is determined individually and depends on the age, the severity of the condition, and other factors. As a rule, the dosage is identical for both relieving and preventing attacks.
- This medicine is safe to apply during the pregnancy and breastfeeding periods if it is used as recommended by a doctor.
- In the case of a severe attack, the dosage can be increased up to 10 puffs. But your doctor will provide you with extra recommendations for such situations.
- You can use this medication up to 4 times per day, regardless of the number of puffs.
- Before using an inhaler, shake it for about 15 times.
- It is also advisable to shake the device between puffs.
- In case you need to take several puffs (for example, during an intense attack), make 30-second pauses between them.
- If you have not made use of an inhaler for long, like a couple of weeks or around that, relieve 2–3 puffs into the air.
- The most crucial recommendation ― you should never try this medicine or change the dosage prescribed without receiving approval from your doctor.
- Do not give this medication to anyone, regardless of the circumstances, even if a person experiences the same symptoms or disease as you.
- You should constantly monitor your supply of the medicine and refill the prescription on time. With some inhalers, it can be difficult or impossible to find out how much medicine is left inside them. So, it is better to keep a record of the use of the drug. As a rule, manufacturers indicate how many doses an inhaler contains.
- Naturally, you should always be ready for a rapid attack, so, taking an inhaler with you every time you leave the home is a must. Remember that asthma attacks can develop and get worse very quickly, so do not risk walking around your neighborhood without a rescue medicine in your pocket or bag.
- If you have never used inhalers before, it is advisable to make the first try with a medical specialist (a doctor or a pharmacist) monitoring your actions.
- In case your kid uses an inhaler, be sure to supervise him during every intake.
- If you are not sure that you use a device correctly, do not put your life at risk and ask your doctor to recommend a spacer.
- This asthma drug rarely causes side effects, when applied as recommended. But the bigger the dosage, the higher the risk of adverse effects is.
- The most frequent side effects related to the use of this drug include an increase in the heartbeat, feeling dizzy or shaky, headaches, muscular cramps. The good news is that these symptoms are not dangerous and there is a good chance that they will get weaker over some time (as soon as your organism gets adjusted to the action of the medicine). Still, if they interfere with your life or the situation does not seem to get better, turn to a doctor for advice.
- In rare cases, the drug can cause dangerous side effects. If you feel severe weakness, dizziness, headaches, muscle pains, muscle cramps, pains in the chest, an abnormal increase in the heartbeat, lose consciousness, or notice symptoms of an allergy, call 9-1-1 or go to the hospital immediately.
- Be sure to monitor how many puffs you take per day and per week. If you notice that you need to use the drug more than 4 times per day or more than 2 days per week, schedule a consultation with your doctor. Those are the signs that the treatment prescribed does not provide the effect needed or that the health problem is getting worse. Another reason to turn to a medical specialist ― you have to wake up at night to take a puff of the medication at least once per week.
- One more caution worth mentioning as a separate point ― if you feel no effect after taking the medicine or have to struggle to breathe properly, you should turn for urgent medical help without any delays. Your condition can get much worse very quickly.
- No doubt, you should keep an inhaler clean. If you see that it is dirty, you can remove a cap and a mouthpiece and rinse them in water. But you should never try to wash or to clean any other parts, that may spoil a device. Before reassembling a tool, make sure that all the parts are absolutely dry.
10 Frequently Asked Questions about the Drug
- Is it available without a prescription?
In most countries, no.
- Is it used for asthma only?
No, it can be also prescribed for treating other conditions that are associated with breathing obstruction.
- When should I use it?
There are two main indications ― to stop an attack that has already manifested itself or to prevent an attack associated with hard physical activities or other triggers.
- How many puffs should I take at a time?
In most cases, patients need to take 1–2 inhalations. In the case of a severe attack, the dose can be increased.
- Can I use this remedy every day?
No. The limit is two days per week. If you need it more frequently, the treatment should be changed. Also, your doctor is likely to prescribe you another asthma medicine for daily use that will reduce the frequency of attacks.
- Is it safe to take this drug for a long period?
Since asthma cannot be fully cured, most patients have to use this product for many years until they are prescribed a substitution. Over some time, you will experience attacks and use this medicine less often, but you should always have it at hand in any case.
- When will I feel the effect?
The medicine will start working right away. You will feel much better within a few minutes as a maximum.
- What if I do not feel any effect after taking the drug?
If you do not feel any improvements or start feeling even worse, call an ambulance.
- Should I shake an inhaler before using it?
Yes. You should do it before every puff.
- Can I drive after taking this medicine?
If you experience such side effects as dizziness, weakness, feeling shaky or any other that may prevent you from driving safely, you should wait until you get better.
Important information: This article is published for informational only, it is not a piece of medical advice. Since Ventolin is a prescription medicine, it cannot be used without getting approval from your doctor. To avoid adverse health consequences, please, use this medication in strict compliance with the specialist’s recommendations. Do not exceed the dosage prescribed regardless of your state or the effect received. Our company does not bear any responsibility for any health or financial consequences associated with your use of the product mentioned or the content presented above.