Breathing Treatment: Asthma, COPD, Types, Treatment

Today, respiratory therapy is a significant milestone for treating a patient suffering from breathing problems. Many people breathe effortlessly without constraints, but people with conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma usually require the help of special treatment to achieve a full range of lung functions.

According to the National Center for Health Statistics, approximately 14.8 and 25 million Americans are diagnosed with COPD and asthma, making chronic obstructive pulmonary disease the 4th leading cause of death in the United States.

Breathing treatment is mainly a technique to correct wrong breathing patterns using an established method to minimize chronic medication dependence. Medication is delivered using an inhaler or nebulizer, rapidly transporting drugs into the airways to improve breathing.

Medications during breathing treatments vary depending on the patient’s severity, nature, and overall health; however, it is crucial to notify your doctor before undergoing this treatment since the patient’s condition’s factors differ.

Common types of Breathing Treatments

Your doctor will prescribe a breathing treatment based on a conclusive diagnosis. However, speak to your doctor if you have concerns about a recommended treatment option. Common types of breathing treatment include:

Bronchodilator Medications

Bronchodilators relax lower airways muscles to aid the easy flow of oxygen to the lungs. Examples of Bronchodilator medications are ipratropium (Atrovent) and metaproterenol (Alupent).

Your doctor may prescribe Bronchodilators for maintaining asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

Antimicrobial drugs

Antimicrobial drugs help reduce the effect of pathogens attacking the airways in the lungs.

Respiratory infections are pretty common and can affect anybody irrespective of age and gender; however, certain conditions increase susceptibility to risk.

Your doctor will prescribe oral antimicrobial drugs to treat the infection for mild cases. Still, for a chronic respiratory disorder, intravenous treatment or inhaled antibiotics might be prescribed by your doctor.


Epinephrine injections help to reverse allergic reactions such as anaphylaxis quickly. Anaphylaxis is a life-threatening condition that narrows airways, leading to difficulty breathing. You can use an epinephrine auto-injector (EpiPen) to inject the drug into the body system.


Immunotherapy is a new treatment option that bolsters your immune system to tackle cancer and some respiratory diseases when traditional methods fail. Immunotherapy treatment works by binding monoclonal antibiotics to inflammatory substances causing difficulty breathing.

How are Breathing Treatments Administered?


Nebulizer primarily functions by vaporizing medication through air compressors that the patient then uses a facemask. Nebulizers come in different sizes and operations. Some require an electric power source, while other portable measures can operate on batteries.

Using this device is quite comfortable as all you have to do is sit still and breathe into the mask for about 5 to 10 minutes.


While nebulizers are easier to use, inhalers are cheaper and have fewer adverse effects than nebulizers. Inhaler stores drugs in a canister fully fitted in the inhaler and released as aerosols when inhaled.

Due to ease of mobility and not to depend on electricity or batteries for operations, an inhaler takes less than 30 seconds to administer a recommended dose of medication.

Respiratory diseases that require Breathing Treatments


Asthma is a respiratory condition causing inflammation and narrowing of the airways, leading to a life-threatening attack. During an asthma attack, Albuterol medications help alleviate flare-ups and prevent future occurrences.

Albuterol provides instant relief and can be administered using a nebulizer or inhaler.

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a chronic respiratory condition that prevents proper oxygen circulation to the lungs. Health care physicians often prescribe corticosteroids and bronchodilators for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Corticosteroids help free your airways during an attack, while bronchodilators ease inflammation. In extreme cases, you may undergo Surgery, Lung therapy, or Lung rehabilitation.

Side Effects of Breathing Treatment

Treatment for respiratory conditions is usually dependent on the underlying condition. Side effects experienced by patients differ depending on the medication administered. Common side effects experienced by a patient undergoing breathing treatment includes:

  • Shakiness
  • irritability
  • heart palpitations
  • nervousness
  • headaches
  • anxiety
  • Lightheadedness
  • Nasal congestion

Discuss your concerns with your doctors before embarking on a breathing treatment course so they can recommend a suitable method.

How to Minimize Complication

You can minimize breathing treatment complications by strictly adhering to the following routine below.

  • Update your doctor about recent health challenges that might cause complications
  • Strictly follow your doctor’s prescription
  • Seek emergency medical help if your condition degenerate
  • Keep all doctor’s appointment

Respiratory issues can be frightening and cause discomfort. Early diagnosis and treatment are critical to a quick recovery. If you have a chronic respiratory condition, you should visit your healthcare center regularly for proper medical intervention.

Tags: Health Tips

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