In Tipperary only 7% of asthmatics know all the symptoms of an asthma attack, according to the Asthma Society of Ireland.
There are 15,377 asthmatics living in County Tipperary. One person dies a week in Ireland as a result of their asthma, but 90% of these deaths are preventable. To mark the global World Asthma Day, the Society wants everyone to learn the symptoms of an asthma attack and the 5 Step Rule to save a life in Tipperary.
A recent Asthma Society survey of over 1,100 asthmatics, supported by both GSK & Boots Ireland, has revealed an alarming gap in knowledge around managing asthma and the resulting asthma attacks.
Only 7% of asthmatics know all asthma symptoms when surveyed
27% of asthmatics do not consider daily use of their reliever inhaler as an indication that they are at risk of an asthma attack
Almost half of asthmatics would not see a health care professional after having an attack
20% do not know that exposure to known asthma triggers is putting oneself at risk of an asthma attack
Only one in five asthmatics know it is safe to have 10 puffs of reliever inhaler during an asthma attack
Less than 5% of asthmatics know they must see a Healthcare Professional if they using their reliever inhaler more than twice a week
The CEO of the Asthma Society of Ireland, Sarah O’Connor, a Tipperary native, said: “It is troubling to think that so few asthmatics in Tipperary know all the symptoms of an asthma attack, placing them at huge risk of a serious attack which can be fatal. Therefore, it is vital that all asthmatics and their carers learn the symptoms of an asthma attack and the 5 Step Rule so that they are fully prepared. It really could be the difference between life and death. Our partnership with Boots Ireland during May is an ideal way to have your asthma reviewed and to learn the 5 Step Rule.”
5 Step Rule
1. Stay calm.
2. Sit up straight - do not lie down.
3. Take slow steady breaths. Take one puff of your reliever inhaler (usually blue) every minute.
Use a spacer if available.
People over 6 years can take up to 10 puffs in 10 minutes.
Children under 6 can take up to 6 puffs in 10 minutes.
4. Call 112 or 999 if your symptoms do not improve after 10 minutes.
5. Repeat step 3 if an ambulance has not arrived in 10 minutes.
Remember, if someone is having an asthma attack:
Do not leave them on their own.
Extra puffs of reliever inhaler (usually blue) are safe.
Symptoms of an asthma attack: wheezing, continuous coughing, chest tightness, shallow breathing, lips turning blue, difficulty finishing sentences.