A very common respiratory tract disease, asthma is accompanied by several symptoms like coughing, wheezing, and difficulty in breathing. To counteract this disease, OTC asthma medications are recommended. How do OTC asthma medications work? It works in two ways: one, it blocks asthma attacks by fending the onset of triggers and second, it provides quick comfort by clearing the air passages.
The first category of OTC medications includes loratadine, diphenhydramine, or chlorpheniramine that comes in either oral or liquid form. Most asthma allergies are due to histamines. Therefore, an antihistamine prevents asthma attacks by stopping the histamines from entering your system. This type of medications for asthma is the same as those prescribed for the sickness. For example, Claritin which was originally available for prescription, is currently ready for use as an over-the-counter medication.
Be careful though when choosing an antihistamine because there are those that are combined with other ingredients in one single medicine. Always read the packaging. One prevalent effect of antihistamine is drowsiness and even recent medications still has this effect. Take, for example, benadryl. This medication is actually consumed as a sleeping aid. Another kind of OTC medication is inhaled medicines. Primatene mist is such an example where it contains epinephrine, which is classified as a bronchodilator. The active ingredient epinephrine is a stimulant so an overdosage of any medication containing this ingredient can cause an elevation of blood pressure as well as jittery feeling.
Although OTC asthma medications are perceived to be dangerous and not so effective in treating the sickness, it’s been proven to work efficiently for the random and delicate asthma attacks that a person suffers. Plus, it’s reasonably priced than the prescription drugs. An OTC medication is very beneficial to almost all types of attacks in asthma. However, it is best to use prescription drugs as indicated. However, is severe cases of asthma attacks, a prescription inhaler with a relatively strong effect such as Proventil is really needed. Aside from this prescription inhaler, the doctor will also recommend an inhaler like Flovent for maintenance purposes so that lung inflammation is avoided, and future attacks are minimized.