Alert!!! Treatment Change

I'm not ready to declare this the latest change in my asthma step down plan 100% successful. However, I’m definitely moving in a positive direction. The last few weeks health insurance and mail order pharmacy have been reminding me how far I’ve come.

No prescriptions filled

With reduced medication brings a deluge of pharmacy and health insurance "reminders". I get at least one mailing via postal or electronic mail nearly every day. Why yes, computer, I have in fact filled 0 controller inhaler scripts in 2018. I promise I am taking my controller as prescribed. I started out the year with 5 controllers in my medication stash. My lower dose treatment plan has me going through about 1/2 an inhaler per month.

I understand what my health insurance and mail order pharmacy are trying to accomplish. I know I am the 1 asthmatic out of hundreds or thousands where it is a good thing I’m not refilling my controller. It actually means my asthma control has improved. I know their computer can’t understand the nuance of my treatment plan. For most people, these reminders are probably a useful tool in improving medication compliance.

These reminders come with mixed emotions. I cannot dismiss them entirely because I am still on a daily control inhaler. The options I have in the pharmacy management portal are to refill or remove the medication because you are no longer taking it. In another month or two I will need to order a refill. I know the day I can tick the box that says no more daily controllers will be a huge victory. I will do a happy dance and know I’ve made it to the land of rainbows, sunshine, and mild intermittent asthma.

Mild intermittent asthma - a dream

Mild intermittent asthma may always just be a dream and never a reality. I am so close and yet so far. I am doing my best to relish in the victory of needing about half as much medication as this time last year. This checkbox on the pharmacy website is one more reminder that as far as I’ve come there is still room for improvement. With some luck and perseverance, I will continue to walk down the well-controlled path. I keep telling myself that asthma control does not define my worth as a person. I am doing the best I can to live my life and take care of myself. If I have a flare or need to step up my treatments that is ok.

I know that reliance on medication to control my asthma is fine. Little things like this medication compliance reminder bring asthma to the front of my mind. I know I’m lucky to live in a world where I take some meds everyday and otherwise can largely live a “normal” life. I know many people live work much harder to achieve a normal life with asthma. This alert in my inbox reminds me that I’m not normal. I may not look sick. I have the control that I know many members of our community would love. Are you just one checkbox away from a level of control that makes you sing?

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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