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How do I get my family to understand my asthma?

I'm a little frustrated right now. I've been having some issues with my asthma and I'm on the Prednisone taper, Zpack and nebulizer. My issues is my O2 is staying below 94%. Doctor is trying everything to keep me out of the hospital.
I take my SpO2 to check my levels. My husband says let me take mine..."see mine is close to yours". " I don't have any issues.. You act like your suffocating". I think he's in denial that I have a health issue. Guess it will take me being put in the hospital to make him realize that Asthma is a serious condition. Thanks for letting me vent!


  1. Hi animallover - thanks for your candor in your post! You are always welcome to 'vent' here - it is just one of the many reasons we have this online community.
    Since you mentioned that one of your concerns is when your oxygen saturation level falls below 94%, I was curious as to what saturation level generally keeps you comfortable? Do you find you have clinical symptoms when the saturation level falls below 94%?
    If there is anything we can do to assist you, please let me or any other moderator / team member know. We are always here to listen and lend an understanding ear.
    Warm regards,
    Leon (site moderator asthma.net)

    1. Hi, -- sorry you are having trouble communicating with your husband when it comes to oxygen levels. Asthma is so multi-layered and it can be hard for people to wrap their minds around, especially if they don't have asthma themselves.

      I thought this article from one of our respiratory therapists might be useful in your continuiing conversations:

      https://asthma.net/living/lets-talk-pulse-oximetry

      The key thing for both of you to remember is that each person is different. Some people are more sensitive to changes in oxygen saturation. As you'll see in that article, it can be common for a person in the middle of an asthma attack to have "good" looking numbers on the oximeter. And yet there they are, having intense difficulty breathing! Your experience is real and valid.

      The 94% reading is still within the "normal" range -- but, again, you have asthma and I am assuming your husband does not. It's like if two people the same size went hiking, and one got tired quicker than the other. We are all in different places regarding our health.

      Has your husband come with you to your doctor's appointments lately? It may be helpful for him to hear directly from your doctor about the way yur asthma is affecting you. At least I hope so!

      Hang in there. We are always here to support you and I hope you'll keep us up to date. Take care!

      -Melissa, asthma.net team

      1. I heard about an experiment - which I didn't try, but maybe your husband wants to. Having asthma seems to feel like breathing through one or more straws. Breathing in is not that hard, but getting the air out gets increasingly difficult. Even if it isn't exactly what we experience during an asthma attack, it will get him out of breathe for sure, as far as I know. This might show him how scary and uncomfortable an attack is.

        1. I have also heard of this test before. "Breathing through a straw" is one way community members often describe how asthma can feel. Thanks for bringing this up! -Ashlen, Asthma.net community moderator



        2. Hi I know what you mean and I am lucky enough to have a doctor who says I don’t deal with numbers, you know your body so tell me how you feel.
          Only people who have been where you are will know how you feel, that’s why this site is so good we are all trying to get answers about asthma and this site helps good luck and I hope you feel better soon.

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