Mometasone Furoate inhaler over the counter

Reviewed by:
Dr. Robert Kwok
Director of Health Informatics
Last updated on January 5, 2022

Bronchial asthma is a very common disease. Across the United States, it affects more than 3 million people every year. 

It is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects the airways of the lungs. It’s characterized by hyperreactivity of airways, inflammation of airways, and intermittent obstruction in airflow due to excessive mucus and constriction of bronchial airways. 

People living with asthma can face difficulty breathing during an attack, which can sometimes be life-threatening. Since it’s a chronic disease that lasts for years, it is extremely important to get the right kind of medications so that you can control your symptoms. 

For most people, that means getting a medicated inhaler, which can provide quick relief during an asthma attack. 

Can I get a mometasone furoate inhaler over the counter?

No—not without a prescription from a doctor. 

Mometasone furoate is a steroidal anti-inflammatory drug with some possible side effects. It should only be used on the recommendation of a physician. Using too much can lower your immune response and put you at risk of infections. 

Some of the possible side effects of using mometasone furoate inhalers are:

  • Upper respiratory tract infections 

  • Oral candidiasis (oral thrush)

  • Sinusitis 

Symptoms of asthma

  • Wheezing

  • Coughing

  • Pain or tightness in the chest

  • Shortness of breath

Save yourself a trip to the doctor’s office and instead consult a doctor on HealthTap online if you think you have been having mild to moderate symptoms of asthma. With expert consultation, you can get the right kind of inhalers in the comfort of your home.

How do doctors diagnose asthma?

Doctors usually take a detailed history of your current symptoms, any other past and current medical conditions, or any drug allergies. 

They can run you through some tests which may be necessary for excluding other alternate diagnoses. They can also order imaging tests like X-rays, lung function tests, spirometry, or fractional exhaled nitric oxide to assess the function of the lungs and diagnose asthma properly (these tests are not available via HealthTap). 

Reviewing your medical history and completing testing is important to personalize a treatment plan. A particularly important feature in diagnosing asthma is showing the reversible pattern of airflow obstruction when treated with asthma medication. 

How do doctors treat asthma?

Let’s have a look at how is asthma treated.

Medications 

Treatment options for asthma include a wide variety of medications. The medications are divided into 2 broad categories according to their use in different situations.

  • Controller inhalers - These are generally long-acting drugs. They prevent acute attacks of asthma and keep the severity of asthma in check. 

  • Reliever, Rescue inhalers - These are rescue drugs and provide instant relief from asthma symptoms. 

Most of the common asthma medications are given via inhalers. Inhalers are mechanical devices that deliver a precise dose of the drug directly into the lungs. This is beneficial because it drastically reduces the amount of drugs absorbed into the bloodstream, which lowers the incidence of any unwanted side effects. 

Other types of asthma medications include: 

  • Corticosteroids – Potent anti-inflammatory drugs that are considered the drug of choice for asthma control. Cases of severe asthma symptoms, which are not controlled by inhalers, may require oral steroids. 

  • Beta-2 agonists – Beta-2 receptors are a type of receptor present in the airways of the lungs. Beta-2 agonists stimulate these receptors and dilate (open) the bronchi, providing quick relief during an attack. Short-acting, rapid-onset beta-2 agonists such as albuterol or salbutamol are particularly useful as rescue medications, whereas long-acting ones provide an around-the-clock effect and are useful as controller medications.

  • Anticholinergics – These drugs dilate the bronchi by causing an airway’s relaxation response to help you breathe better. 

  • Mast cell stabilizers – These drugs reduce the production of histamine. Excess histamine causes swelling and irritation in the airways.

  • Leukotriene antagonists – Asthma patients’ lungs produce excess leukotrienes, which constricts their airways—these medications prevent that.

Medications used for asthma should be individualized based your symptoms. The dose, frequency, and duration of the medication may need to be adjusted according your unique condition. You should check with your doctor if you experience any change in the pattern of your asthma symptoms.

Self Care 

There are several lifestyle and environmental changes you can make to help reduce your asthma symptoms such as:

  • Quitting smoking - Smoking can exaggerate the symptoms and severity of asthma. 

  • Avoiding known allergens - Sometimes, controlling your asthma can be as simple as avoiding any known allergic substance that can cause your symptoms to flare up. 

  • Buying an air filter - Some people experience seasonal variation in asthma symptoms, especially during high pollen days and during the winter. Using air filters and staying indoors can help you avoid flare-ups. 

  • Exercising - Engaging in daily aerobic exercise is beneficial for patients with asthma as it helps increase lung capacity. 

    Some people may experience exercise-induced asthma, but this doesn’t necessarily mean they should avoid it. Patients with exercise-induced asthma should also include the right kinds of exercises into their schedules after consulting with a physician so that the duration and type of exercise can be fine-tuned according to their tolerance.

Supportive Care

  • Oxygen therapy - Supplemental oxygen is used if a person undergoing a severe asthma attack has a blood oxygen level that’s dropped too low.

Can an asthma attack kill you?

Yes. 

Let’s answer: How does an asthma attack kill you? 

During an attack, your oxygen levels can dip to critical levels and affect the supply of oxygen to vital organs like the brain and heart. If you don’t seek medical treatment fast enough, those organs can be deprived of the oxygen they need to keep you alive.

With the kind of medications we have today, asthma deaths are rare, but they rise sharply if asthma is not treated properly. 

Also, smoking with asthma can kill you by increasing the chances of catching infections and other lung diseases such as COPD.

Get yourself evaluated as soon as possible if you have been diagnosed with asthma and have not been taking your medications on time. Our team of primary care doctors can help you in managing your asthma. With our help, you can beat asthma before it beats you. 

Can I be treated for asthma online?

Yes, you can book a consultation with a Healthtap doctor to manage and treat your asthma online. Your HealthTap doctor can review your asthma symptoms and medications with you and help you manage your asthma. If your doctor decides to prescribe medication for you, you may have the prescription filled at your local pharmacy. 

What kind of doctors do you see for asthma?

 You can visit the following doctors for asthma:

  • Primary care provider (HealthTap) - Diagnoses, manages and treats common health conditions. For mild to moderate symptoms, this may be your best doctor for asthma.

  • Allergist - Doctor specializing in allergic conditions, usually with expertise in asthma and immunology.

  • Pulmonologist - Doctor specializing in lung conditions, such as asthma. 

  • Pediatrician - Primary care provider for children under 18 years old.

How can HealthTap help you? 

Use HealthTap to:

HealthTap Editors

HealthTap Editors

HealthTap articles are reviewed by MDs, PhDs, NPs, nutritionists and other healthcare professionals. Visit https://www.healthtap.com/about-doctors/ to learn more and meet some of the medical editorial board members behind our blog. The information does not constitute and should not be relied on for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment. HealthTap is a virtual-first, affordable urgent- and primary-care clinic, providing top-quality physician care nationwide to Americans with or without insurance. Our proprietary, easy-to-use, and innovative apps and electronic medical record apply Silicon Valley standards to effectively engage consumers and doctors online to increase the equity, accessibility, and efficiency of ongoing medical care for consumers, providers, employers, and payers. In addition, with HealthTap, businesses can offer virtual primary care to employees for less than the cost of free coffee. HealthTap's US-based board-certified physicians are available throughout North America. For more information, visit www.healthtap.com.
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