Managing Your Asthma

For members with moderate to severe asthma

If you have moderate to severe asthma it's important for you to learn all you can about asthma and to work with your physician to try and control the disease.

How do you know if your asthma is moderate to severe?

You'll usually experience the following symptoms two or more times a week:

  • Wheezing
  • Chest tightness
  • Feeling short of breath
  • Coughing

The following are some tips and resources to consider:

  • On an annual basis, work with your doctor to review or develop a treatment plan that includes peak flow values or a symptom diary.
  • Medications such as inhaled steroids, cromolyn or leukotriene inhibitors may also help prevent asthma attacks. Talk to your doctor to see if these are right for you.
  • Understand what triggers your asthma, such as dust, pets, smoke, exercise or colds. Discuss your triggers with your health care provider and take steps to decrease your exposure to them.
  • Quit smoking
  • Get a flu shot once a year between September and December.
  • You should not only work to reduce the symptoms of asthma, but also participate in physical activities. If you find you're having trouble meeting these goals, talk to your doctor about a referral to a specialist.