To begin with you should take your peak flow readings before using your inhalers every morning and again in the evening, for 2 weeks. Your healthcare provider can then see if your readings are as high as they should be.
You may choose to either make a graph or keep a diary of these readings and how you feel.
- If your peak flow values are high, your healthcare provider may tell you to reduce your inhalers.
- If your peak flow values are low, your healthcare provider may change your inhalers or increase the number of puffs you are taking.
- If your treatment is changed, keep using your peak flow meter to monitor any changes in your peak flow.
When you are well and your peak flow reading is at its best and steady, you don't have to use your meter every day.
Peak flow meters should be used when:
- you have a runny nose or feel a cold coming on
- you just don't feel as well as usual
- you know you've been exposed to one of your asthma triggers
- your treatment has been changed
- you've have had a recent acute asthma attack (keep recording until readings are normal and your symptoms settle down)
- before you visit your healthcare provider.