Your asthma action plan

An asthma action plan is a written plan to help you manage your asthma. You and your family doctor will work together to create the plan, which will contain personalized instructions to help you deal with different situations. Your pharmacist can also help you.

An asthma action plan may also be called an asthma care plan. Asthma action plans may look different, but they all contain similar information to help with asthma management.

An up-to-date asthma action plan can help you control asthma so it doesn't control you!

Here's how an asthma action plan works:

The plan divides your asthma into three "zones" – green, yellow, and red. It gives you instructions to help you tell which zone you are in and what to do for each zone:

  • Green zone: Your asthma is under control. No changes are needed to your treatment plan.
  • Yellow zone: You may be losing control of your asthma. Your asthma action plan will give you personalized instructions for how to adjust your medication doses (reliever medications, inhaled corticosteroids, and some combination inhalers can be given at higher doses when asthma worsens) and when to call your doctor.
  • Red zone: Emergency! Your asthma action plan will recommend that you seek immediate medical attention, and will give you personalized instructions for which medications to take (and at what doses) while you are waiting to be seen by a doctor.

You and your doctor will fill in specific instructions for each zone so you know which zone you are in and what to do if your asthma gets worse (i.e., if you are in the yellow or red zones). Having an asthma action plan can give you a greater sense of control over your asthma. It can also improve your lung function, reduce your risk of ending up in the hospital, and make it less likely that you'll need to go to the emergency room.

If you don't have an asthma action plan, talk to your doctor about getting one! Asthma is a variable disease, so it's important to know how to manager your asthma and what to do if it gets worse. Because your asthma can change over time, it's also important to revisit your asthma action plan at every doctor's visit and keep it up to date.

Keep your asthma action plan with you at all times. Your asthma action plan will give you the knowledge you need to stay in charge of your asthma!

Feel free to print off a copy of  "My Asthma Action Plan", our version of an asthma action plan that you and your doctor can use and fill out together.

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