What can I do durin an asthma attack to help me to breath while I am waiting for inhailer to work ands how can you tell if it is an emergency?

Peak flow. The rescue inhaler should work pretty fast, if it doesn't go to the er or call 911. A good gauge to how bad your asthma attack is will be your peak flow, if it is in the red it is an emergency.
Don't wait long. Your "rescue inhaler" (such as albuterol) should work within minutes. If you do not feel any relief, or have used it several times in a row without relief, feel dizzy, have bluish fingertips or lips, or feel you're just getting too tired to keep breathing so hard, go directly to the er! if you use a peak flow meter, the "red zone" means you are having a very severe attack and should go to er.