Why Spacers Make Asthma Inhalers More Effective

If you have asthma, using your asthma inhaler alone isn’t enough. Using a spacer device helps you optimize each dosage.

What is an asthma spacer?

A spacer is a cylindrical device that attaches to an inhaler on one end and has a mouthpiece or mask on the other.

Who should use an asthma spacer?

“Everyone who uses an inhaler should use a spacer every time that they use that inhaler,” shares Michelle Freiheit, a registered respiratory therapist at ProMedica Toledo Hospital. “If you don’t use a spacer, the medicine isn’t getting to the lungs, and therefore is going to waste.”

Why should you use an asthma spacer?

It’s more difficult than you think to breathe in asthma medication and get it where it needs to be (the lungs). “When an inhaler is used without a spacer, much of the medicine ends up in the mouth, throat and stomach,” explains Freiheit.A spacer is a useful device to help guide the medicine into the lungs.”

Photo credit: Allies Against Asthma, Center for Pediatric Research

What type of asthma spacer should you use?

There are two types of spacer devices: a mouthpiece spacer and a spacer with a mask. A mouthpiece spacer works well for individuals who can take a slow, deep breath in and hold the breath for 10 seconds. For anyone who struggles with this, a spacer with a mask is a useful tool.

Watch the videos below to learn how to correctly use each type of spacer device.

How To Use an Asthma Spacer With a Mask

How To Use an Asthma Spacer With a Mouthpiece

Ready to get an asthma spacer for yourself? Talk to your provider about what type of spacer is right for you.