What’s your Asthma Action Plan?

Do you have asthma or know someone who does? Find out how an asthma action plan can help you manage your symptoms and prevent attacks.

March 06, 2018 | HF Healthy Living Team

If you or your child has asthma, you should have an asthma action plan. This written plan can help you live a full and active life when you know how to control this condition.

This plan simply outlines how to manage your medication, avoid triggers and recognize early warning signs to prevent asthma attacks. When followed correctly, it can also help you decide how to act quickly during flare-ups or emergencies.

Here’s how you can create an effective asthma action plan:

Start with your Doctor

Visit your Primary Care Provider (PCP) and work together to create a plan that fits your needs. Remember, each person’s asthma is different and no two plans are the same. With the help of your PCP, you’ll learn how to follow your treatment, track asthma symptoms, and make the right call in any situation.

Print out this sample asthma action plan and review it with your PCP during your next visit.

Understand your Medication

Your asthma action plan will include instructions for how and when to take your medications as prescribed by your doctor. You should always take your medication even when you’re feeling well, and especially if symptoms begin to appear or worsen.

Whether you take long-term control or quick-relief medicines, it’s important to know how they work so you’re comfortable taking them. If you’re having problems with your medication, talk to your doctor.

Know your Asthma Zones

An asthma action plan is made up of three action zones (green, yellow, and red). These zones will help you know how to act based on your symptoms, peak flows (how well you’re breathing), or both.

  • The Green Zone: This is the safety zone. It means you are doing well if you are not coughing, wheezing or experiencing chest tightness or shortness of breath. You can continue with your day-to-day activities. Remember, continue to follow your medication as prescribed even if you’re feeling well.
  • The Yellow Zone: This is the caution zone. It means your asthma may be getting worse if you begin coughing, wheezing, and experiencing chest tightness or shortness of breath. You might even have a hard time sleeping or performing certain physical activities. Take action and follow your instructions for treatment and monitor your symptoms. Talk to your doctor and find out if your controller medicine may need to change.
  • The Red Zone: This is the danger zone. It means your quick-relief medicines have not helped and your symptoms have worsened after 24 hours in the yellow zone. Call your doctor immediately. If you’re still in the red zone after 15 minutes, take emergency action NOW and go to the hospital for medical attention.

Avoid Triggers

The best way to avoid asthma symptoms is knowing what causes it in the first place. These are known as your triggers. Reduce your asthma symptoms by knowing what your triggers are and how you can avoid them. From animal dander, pollen, to dust and cigarette smoke, you can find out what they are by talking to your doctor.

While avoiding triggers isn’t always possible, you can be prepared. Make sure you carry your medication and make changes in your home or workplace to reduce the severity of your asthma symptoms.

Share Your Asthma Action Plan

You’re not alone when it comes to managing your asthma. Try to include your family members, friends, and co-workers so they can help in case you’re not able to respond to your asthma symptoms on time. Sharing your asthma action plan with the people around you can save you or your child’s life. Make sure your plan is always updated and to carry your asthma essentials with you.

Remember, only you can control your asthma. Are you ready to create an asthma action plan? Don’t forget to download this sample asthma action plan and protect your or your child’s health today.



© 2018 HF Management Services, LLC.

Healthfirst is the brand name used for products and services provided by one or more of the Healthfirst group of affiliated companies.

This health information or program is for educational purposes only and not intended to treat, diagnose, or act as a substitute for medical advice from your provider. Consult your healthcare provider and always follow your healthcare provider’s instructions.

“People with Asthma Should Have an Asthma Action Plan.” Accessed February 1, 2018.

“Understand Your Child’s Asthma Action Plan.” WebMD. Accessed February 1, 2018.

“Create an Asthma Action Plan.” American Lung Association. Accessed February 1, 2018.

“Asthma Action Plan.” U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Accessed February 1, 2018.

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