Monitoring your asthma is a crucial step in managing it. Because asthma symptoms, triggers and severity differ from person to person, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to treatment. When you monitor your asthma every day, you have a better picture of what’s causing your symptoms and can develop insight into how best to manage it.
When you get an asthma diagnosis, your doctor will work with you to develop an individualized asthma action plan. This is a document that tracks the severity of your asthma, details your treatment and outlines when to go to your doctor or seek emergency services.
Getting in the daily habit of recording your asthma symptoms, even on days when you don’t have any, helps you gain insight into when you’re most likely to experience symptoms. Additionally, you can share with your doctor so they can help adjust your treatment plan if necessary. You can use a written asthma diary or a tracking app on your phone.
Using an at-home peak flow meter, you can see how your lung function improves or worsens over time and how well you’re responding to treatment and medication. Talk to your doctor about how frequently you should be testing and recording your lung function.
As you are recording your symptoms and testing your lung function, be looking for any changes, such as symptoms happening more days in a week or your lung function steadily decreasing over time. If you see this happening, make sure you are following your asthma action plan and, if necessary, make an appointment with your doctor.