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What to do in an asthma attack

  1. Sit down, try to relax and take slow deep breaths; don’t lie down.

  2. Take 1 puff of your reliever inhaler every 30–60 seconds; you can take up to 10 puffs.

  3. If you feel worse at any point while you’re using your inhaler or you don’t feel better after 10 puffs call 999 immediately.

  4. If the ambulance isn’t there within 15 minutes, repeat step 2.

  5. If you feel better, and don’t need to go to A&E, you should still see your GP or nurse on the same day.

  6. If you’ve been prescribed prednisolone (steroid tablets) to keep at home, take as instructed by your doctor or nurse.1


This information is not designed for people on a SMART or MART medicine plan. If you are on a SMART or MART medicine plan, please speak to your GP or asthma nurse to get the correct asthma attack information.1

Approval code: RESP-IE-NP-00091

Date of preparation: November 2020

  1. Your asthma action plan. Asthma UK. Available at: Last accessed: November 2020.

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