Using A Diary To Help Manage Asthma (40) .pdf
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Using A Diary To Help Manage Asthma
Involving patients in their own health through the use of an asthma diary can be an important tool for
healthcare workers and patients. Consider whether an asthma diary would be a helpful tool for you
using the tips below.
Asthma diaries consist of your daily recorded information about how you felt during the day. Whether
you experienced an asthma trigger during the day or a time of day when your asthma was worse,
what you did about it in terms of medication or medication and a doctor's visit or emergency room
Using a peak flow meter can help you verify what you're experiencing with a measurement of PEF,
which is peak expiratory flow that provides a measurement of how your breathing is doing at a
specific time. This reading is frequently part of the information that is included in asthma diaries. The
value of PEF is over time rather than a single reading because determining a normal value is difficult
since a large range of readings can qualify as normal. Your goal is to determine what is normal for
Asthma diary information includes environmental triggers that make your asthma act up, so that you
can take steps to anticipate or avoid such triggers in the future. Environmental triggers vary widely for
individuals with asthma and getting to know your triggers can be an important part of your action plan
to minimize the impact of your asthma on your lifestyle.
Asthma diaries usually include information that will help indicate times of day you felt better and
worse by breaking your experience down into zones of whether you felt good, less good or bad
enough to visit an emergency room. The colors green for good, yellow for less good and red for not
good are usually used to identify the zone of how you were feeling at a particular time. If a PEF meter
is used, these zones are sometimes broken down by PEF reading values indicating when your
breathing is best or worst.
You can use your asthma diary as a tool for discussing any concerns or issues you have with your
physician, whether they are about your medications or specific allergies and environments that you
think might worsen your asthma symptoms. Effective communication with your doctor can be aided
with the asthma diary because you won't have to remember your daily experiences and what you
wanted to talk about with your doctor between visits since you will have your experience recorded.
Action plans included in asthma diaries do not have to take a lot of time during your day. Some
diaries are kept with a focus on how you respond to medications you take to relieve symptoms as
they occur, or to consider how your breathing is affected by a specific medication over time.
Asthma diaries can provide you with significant information about what or when you experience
asthma flare-ups that require a visit to the emergency room. Bringing your asthma diary with you to
the emergency room can help inform healthcare workers, even if you are having difficulty breathing or
Asthma diaries are a recommended tool for asthma patients to use to better understand and manage
their asthma. Use the tips above for how you can benefit from the information in your asthma diary.
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