Asthma Self-Education: Not Just for Medical Professionals
The asthma world can be downright confusing! Whether you are new to your asthma diagnosis or a seasoned veteran of the disease there are so many components that can be incredibly frustrating. We only have so much time when we see our doctors and they might not have enough time to provide adequate education on the disease and its process. You don’t have to be a medical professional with a degree and medical license to learn and know all about asthma. This is where self-education comes in to play.
Here are a few resources to help start your asthma self-education.
Asthma self-education resources
The internet *can* be your friend. But be smart about it. Not everything you read online is true. Stick to reputable websites and start with the basics. What asthma is and what it does to your lungs.
Read all about your medications, what they specifically do. As advancements are constantly being made in the asthma medication world, there are new medications being released often. Not all asthma medications work in the same way and researching all about how each one works to help keep your asthma under control.
There are many support groups that are specifically for people with asthma. There are support groups both online and often times local to where you live. Check with your state’s American Lung Association to see if they have groups in your area. You can also ask your doctor's office or local hospital if they host any support groups as well.
Whether you get support online or in person it helps to be able to talk to people who are going through their asthma journey and will have some insight and tips to help you with yours. A word of caution, be careful seeking any medical advice on the internet. It’s great to hear the experiences of others; however, treatment plans and medication changes/adjustments/additions (including supplements) should only be made with your doctor.
Asthma conferences and seminars
There are many asthma specific seminars and conferences around the world at varying times of the year. They can range from just a few hours to several days. At these conferences, medical professionals will discuss the latest and greatest in the asthma world. Not all of these conferences/seminars are only for medical professionals.
I have presented at many community asthma expos that were specifically for asthmatics in the community. These types of events are so great because you can ask professionals who all share a passion for asthma and are eager to help in any way possible.
These are only a few ways to learn all about asthma. Asthma education goes beyond the doctor's office and it is up to us to be proactive and take an active role in the management of our asthma.
What resources do you use for asthma self-education?
We would love to hear about what kinds of resources you use to learn more about asthma. Please share your asthma self-education tips, tricks, and tools in the comments below!
Have you ever experienced an itchy chin prior to or during asthma attacks?