Being short of breath is extremely distressing. Sometimes the coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath associated with asthma is due to irritable larynx syndrome and not asthma. The coughing and wheezing can be triggered by perfume, dust and a multitude of household and other chemicals causing tension in the upper airway. The Brompton Hospital Dyspnea (shortness of breath) Clinic treats many people who felt they had asthma but in fact had a vocal cord dysfunction or shortness of breath due to other reasons. If you have bouts of coughing that are hard to control – before you reach for the inhaler try swallowing or try sniffing and blowing.
Short term use of inhalers (mostly these contain salbutamol or ipratropium) doesn’t give the voice too many problems but it’s always advisable to rinse your mouth with water after use. Using an inhaler unnecessarily can have long term adverse effects and it’s not advisable to purchase inhalers over the counter without seeing a doctor.
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