For inhaled asthma medicines to work properly, they need to reach your lungs. By simply attaching a valved holding chamber or spacer to your metered-dose inhaler, you can:
- Help the medicine move past your mouth and throat and get deep into your lungs
- Avoid problems with spraying and breathing at the same time
- Avoid breathing the medicine in too fast
- Make it easier to take your medicine when you are having asthma symptoms
Here are a few questions to ask your healthcare providers:
- Can a spacer or valved holding chamber help me manage my asthma?
- Do I need a prescription so my insurance plan will cover the cost?
- Can I purchase these at my local drugstore or pharmacy, or do I need to use a specialty medical supply company?
- Will you please show me the proper way to use the device and watch me use the device to make sure I'm using it correctly?
- How should I clean and store my device?
- How often should I replace my device?
- If your child has asthma, ask your healthcare provider if he or she can write a prescription for two devices—one to keep and use at home, and one to keep and use at school.
- For children under age 5 years, a mask can be attached to help the child use the spacer or chamber correctly.
- You should always have your quick-relief inhaler and spacer or chamber with you in case your asthma symptoms worsen. Collapsible models are available and may be easier to fit and carry in a handbag or backpack.
Page last updated: December 4, 2023