Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Fighting to Breathe

Let's start this by saying that asthma sucks. I don't get it very often, it's usually illness induced, occasionally weather changes are the cause and one time it was stress induced. But when I feel my lungs constrict and feel like bricks are being placed upon them, when I start wheezing and coughing so bad I get horrible headaches and my throat starts hurting, I know it's time to pull out my trusty inhaler. One or two puffs from a non-expired inhaler brings nearly instant relief with air rushing back into my chest. Only now it's not such a trusty inhaler. Not since the environmental...enthusiasts...got ahold of it. Now it sucks. The relief is no longer forthcoming, and I have to turn to my nebulizer for a breathing treatment, just to get the medicine into my lungs. And according to the doctor I just saw, apparently this mediocre inhaler is going away too, and is going to turn to the powder type. Now, I've had powder inhalers, and they're great for their purpose...which functions as a long term solution for treating and preventing asthma symptoms. It is not fast acting. It is not an emergency inhaler.

I am mad. I am furious. I may not need my inhaler very frequently, but it's reassuring to know that it's there when I need it, waiting to send a burst of medicine in to free my constricted airways. And I usually do not have it so bad initially that I need the absolute emergency feature of the rescue inhaler. But lots of people do. My brother and two of my cousins for instance. My little brother has had to deal with asthma his whole life, and sometimes that rescue inhaler is vital. Same for my cousins...and multiple other members of my family.

Don't get me wrong, I'm all for saving the environment. But really. In the grand scheme of things, I don't think a few rescue inhaler are going to do too much damage. Why don't they focus on the big things that hurt the environment like cars, chemical plants, deforestation? I would be willing to bet that the people who started attacking rescue inhalers and similar medical technology have never relied on one before. I'm sorry that my desire to breathe is so awful to you. To those who initiated these changes, leave us the hell alone and go "fix" something else. Your "input" is not wanted nor is it welcome. Now I'm going to go to a breathing treatment so that I might have a few minutes without coughing and feeling like I can't breathe. And when I finally get this under control and can breathe again, I'm going to go to my cupboard and take my old expired rescue inhaler outside somewhere, and I'm going to puff it until it's empty.


Kimberly said...

That is just HORRIBLE! That's the sort of activism that should be fought AGAINST!

*Jac* said...

This makes me so mad. I don't have asthma. I have used an inhaler before when I have bad colds or a panic attack and I know how wonderful they are. My boyfriend on the other hand has awful asthma. He gets hospitalized for it at least once a year and that's with a daily and emergency inhaler. I can't believe people are fighting against inhalers and I really can't believe they're winning. We still have styrofoam containers, which are useless, but we're getting rid of inhalers which are lifesaving... really??!

Gramma Ann said...

Jaina, I hope by now you are feeling much better and can breathe again.

Sarah Katie said...

Wow, I hope they don't turn my fast acting inhaler into one of the powder ones. I too have trouble with my asthma, usually just around this time of year when the weather is changing and the leaves are turning. I'm allergic to trees, and it seems to be worse when the leaves dry out and fall off the trees. Yes, I may not use my inhaler that often, but when I need it I really need it.

I didn't realize that about the new inhalers, I was kind of wondering why it sometimes took a little more medicine to get my asthma attacks to stop.

Fresh Mommy said...

That is a change I didn't even know about, and wow, I'm sorry about that! Hope you're feeling better and that really stinks about the medicine!

April said...

Wow, I had no idea about the inhalers "disappearing" like that! That is crazy!

Jaina said...

Kim-Couldn't agree more.

Jac-Me too. Good point about the styrofoam. I hope your boyfriend does okay. They gave me one of those attachable air chamber things that supposedly will help, but I'm not convinced. (to be fair, I haven't had a chance to use it yet...I was using the nebulizer instead)

Gramma Ann-Finally, after about a week. Yikes, I hate being sick!

Sarah Katie-I haven't tried it yet, but they gave me one of those air chamber extension things. I guess it's supposed to help. I'll let you know when I use it, you might ask your doctor about one. I know my cousin has one and really likes it (though she used one with the 'real' inhalers too, I haven't talked to her about these new ones yet)

Tabitha-Yeah, it's a frustrating change. And thanks, I'm finally feeling better and back at work!

April-Most definitely agreed. It's total crap.

Anonymous said...

My daughter has asthma, and I have never heard of this! I think it is outrageous! She doesn't need her inhaler often, but when she does, she has it. It works perfectly. I just can't see this happening, I would be one to fight it.

I hope you feel better!! Take care of yourself.

Jaina said...

Cheryl-Isn't it terrible? I'll admit I don't know all the details, but I know the results and what the doctors have told me and I think it's ridiculous. I am feeling much better, thank you!