A Welcome Reprieve
Last updated: February 2023
I have pretty severe asthma. To the point that it is hard not to think about it on a daily basis. I always have some sort of cough and get short of breath at random times. This constant barrage of symptoms can be exhausting, both mentally and physically. A few months ago, I had a severe asthma attack that landed me in the hospital. It was one of the worst attacks I’ve had in a few years. The feeling of not being able to breathe was just pure misery. I met with my pulmonologist following my hospital discharge. During that visit, we decided to make some changes to my medications, and boy am I glad we did.
Reprieve from my asthma symptoms: Changing medicines
I have tried pretty much every asthma medicine and combination thereof during my time as a person with asthma. Low doses, high doses. And while we have been able to mostly manage my symptoms, they never fully went away. In the last couple of years, a new medication combination came out on the market. My doctor was a bit hesitant to try me on it at first because the actual steroid dose was lower than what I had been on for years. But knowing that my asthma was not fully controlled with the meds I was taking, together we decided to give this new medication a try.
Less physical asthma symptoms
I have been on this new combination of medicines for almost two months now and it has been a complete game-changer. I feel like my lungs are more open than they have ever been. I can go days without struggling to take a deep breath. And my persistent cough is no longer persistent. To be honest, it’s kind of weird. Asthma has always been on the back of my mind, day and night, so to go days without thinking about my asthma has been a much-welcomed reprieve.
As a patient and a trained counselor, I can testify that chronic illness brings both a physical and mental burden, and that has certainly been true for me. Because asthma is so unpredictable, I always find myself wondering when the next attack is going to come, worrying if I accidentally leave my inhaler at home. This new medicine has allowed a mental break from some of mental strain and anxiety. I have so many other health problems on my plate, it is so nice to have one less thing to worry about every day.
Now, I’m not saying that I’m letting my guard down, or being reckless with how I manage my asthma, I’m just trying to convey the sense of relief I have had these last few months.
Enjoying this reprieve
I feel like every breath is a breath of fresh air like a weight has somehow been lifted off my chest (pun totally intended). For once in a long long time, I am getting a much-needed break from my symptoms and being able to enjoy every breath instead of struggling to take each one. I am thankful for the freedom this new medication combination has allowed me.
Have you experienced a reprieve from your asthma symptoms? What led to it? Let us know in the comments.
How often do you experience a shortage in your asthma medication?