Before we can issue your treatment you are required to complete a short medical assessment and select your preferred option. The assessment will help us prescribe the right treatment for you.


Your final treatment will be decided by our prescribers based on your medical assessment. You will be asked to select a treatment option from a list after completion of your medical assessment.

Ventolin Inhaler

Ventolin Inhaler

  • First line of defence against asthma
  • Designed to relax the muscles in the airways
  • Quickly relieves symptoms such as wheezing

From £11.99

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Salamol Inhaler

Salamol Inhaler

  • Quickly and effectively opens up the airways
  • Eases coughing, wheezing and tightness on the chest
  • Designed to give instant relief

From £11.99

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What is Asthma?

Asthma is a long term chronic lung condition that usually affects people from childhood but can also develop later in life. It affects the lung airways that carry the air in and out. In the UK, around 5 million people have asthma symptoms. Asthma sufferers include 1 in every 11 children and 1 in every 12 adults.

Asthma patients have sensitive airways, which can become inflamed when they come into contact with certain allergens, triggering a constricting action of the muscles around the airways, resulting in wheezing and a tight chest. There can also be a build up of mucus, which causes a cough. These reactions lead to breathing problems for the sufferer, varying from mild to fatal if left unmedicated.

How effective is the Asthma treatment?

Asthma treatment is either known as a reliever inhaler or a preventer inhaler. Reliever inhalers are highly effective at immediately stopping your initial asthma symptoms and preventing them from developing into full blown asthma attacks. The medication is absorbed into the cells within the lungs, reducing any allergic reaction and the constriction of the air passages.

Preventer Inhalers are a long term, daily treatment used to relax the airways and keep them open so as to stop symptoms and attacks from occurring at all, even when the patient comes into contact with asthma trigger such as pollen. They are only effective to prevent asthma symptoms when taken daily as directed, and if you stop using them, your breathing issues will return.

Is it safe to take an Asthma treatment?

Asthma treatments will only be given by your local GP when necessary, and your dose will be upped or lowered depending on how severe asthma is. Asthma needs to be maintained closely, so in many ways, it is safer to use the medication than not as if an asthma attack strikes without the treatment for asthma, it can be fatal.


There are many different types of treatment available, and you will work closely with your GP or asthma nurse to find the best one for you. Some people may be able to tolerate one form of asthma inhaler better than others, in which case the doctor will prescribe this for you.


Side effects, though mostly mild due to the medication being inhaled directly into the lungs where it can be used immediately, can occur and if this is the case, or if you experience an allergic reaction to one form of asthma inhalers, your doctor can advise you on a different asthma inhaler which may be preferable. This is all part of your personal asthma maintenance plan, which should be reviewed at least once a year.

What different Asthma treatments are available?

The beta-2 agonists are reliever inhalers to be taken when required, and they get to work almost immediately to relieve breathing issues as they begin with results lasting for up to 5 hours. The available short-acting asthma treatments are Salamol, Ventolin and Bricanyl.

The long-acting beta-2 agonists are known as preventer inhalers that keep your airways open and are only fully effective when taken daily as prescribed. The long-acting asthma treatments are Clenilm Seretide, Symbicort, Flixotide, Serevent, Atrovent and Qvar.

Can I buy Asthma inhalers online?

You can buy Asthma inhalers online in the UK without visiting your doctor or pharmacist. You can also have your medication sent directly through discreet delivery to your address via Royal Mail 1st class or next day delivery.

Simply fill in the online questionnaire about your health when prompted, and our Click Pharmacy pharmacist can confirm whether this is the best medication for your situation. This will be based on a number of different factors, such as other medicines you take, allergies you have and whether you currently have an asthma management plan in place.

If approved, you will be given a prescription, after which you can purchase your product online. If it seems that your choice of inhaler would not be the most beneficial option for asthma symptoms, the doctor can advise you on other asthma treatments.

If you have any questions, you can book a free and confidential online appointment at any time.

Does Asthma treatment provide immediate protection?

The reliever inhalers will provide you with immediate, effective relief from your breathing issues:


  • You are taking the right dosage as advised by your doctor
  • You need to use the inhaler correctly, ensuring that the maximum dose of medication goes right down into your lungs.


If you find that your medication is not relieving symptoms as quickly or at all, it could be that your asthma has worsened, and you will need to review your management plan and update your medication and/or dosage.

The reliever inhaler will continue to work for up to 5 hours. The preventer inhaler takes longer to get to work, and depending on which product you are using, it can take up to 7 days of regular daily use to feel the full benefit. After this time, and as long as you continue to use as directed, you should find your asthma symptoms reduce considerably as attacks are prevented. The results of each dose of the preventer can last for up to 12 hours and are usually prescribed twice a day at first and then reduced to the lowest effective dose once your asthma is back under control.

What are the side effects of Asthma inhalers?

Inhalers are an effective treatment for asthma. Like all medicines, they can have side effects. If you have had a lung infection or tuberculosis, any allergic reaction to steroids, or are pregnant or breastfeeding, you should speak to your GP. The inhaler will likely be safe for you, but speak to your doctor before taking them.


Reliever inhaler common side effects

Reliever inhalers have very few side effects. The common side effects are:

  • Shaking
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Headaches
  • Muscle cramps

These side effects go away on their own and do not require any action.


Reliever inhaler rare side effects

  • Chest pain
  • Dizziness
  • Muscle pain or weakness
  • Allergic reaction
  • Severe headaches

If you have any of the rare side effects, seek medical assistance immediately.


Preventer inhaler common side effects

  • Hoarse voice
  • Sore throat
  • Oral thrush

To avoid oral thrush, brush your teeth and rinse your mouth after every use.


Preventer inhaler rare side effects

  • Change in eyesight
  • Infection
  • Adrenal gland problems
  • Cushing’s syndrome
  • Allergic reaction


You should consult your GP before stopping your medication unless it is an allergic reaction. There is generally no food that will change your inhaler’s effectiveness. Prolonged use can cause some side effects, so see your doctor once a year to review the use of your inhaler. If the medication gets into the eye, it can cause a condition called glaucoma, so avoid spraying it anywhere near the face by first placing the mouthpiece into your mouth prior to use. For more detailed information, read the patient information leaflet of the inhaler. 

How do you know if you have Asthma?

You may have asthma if you experience asthma symptoms such as shortness of breath, wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness and coughing regularly. But other conditions like post nasal drip, allergies, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and sleep apnea can also cause the same problems.

Speak to your doctor to get a formal diagnosis. He may start by checking your medical history and asking if someone in your family may have asthma or allergies. He will try to narrow down the triggers and the severity of the symptoms. He will ask when the symptoms are severe, as 75% of asthma patients have worse symptoms at night. The doctor will check your breathing with a stethoscope and may ask to run one or more diagnostic tests. Remember, there is no single profile of asthma that fits all the patients. The severity of coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath can vary from patient to patient.

How is Asthma diagnosed?

Recognising the significance of colour-coded asthma treatment in patient education is well-accepted. The colour of an asthma inhaler indicates whether it is a reliever or a preventative inhaler. Typically, blue inhalers suggest that they provide immediate relief, while other coloured inhalers often contain medicines that prevent asthma.

What is the difference between the different coloured Asthma inhalers?

The colour of an asthma inhaler indicates whether it is a reliever or a preventative inhaler. Typically, blue inhalers suggest that they provide immediate relief, while other coloured inhalers often contain medicines that prevent asthma.

What are the symptoms of Asthma?

The most common symptoms of asthma include:

  • Breathing difficulties
  • Air hunger
  • Tightness in the chest
  • Wheezing
  • Coughing
  • Sleeping problems caused by coughing, wheezing or shortness of breath
  • Attacks triggered by exercise, allergens and other triggers
  • Wheezing and coughing worsened by cold or flu

What are the causes of asthma?

No single cause of asthma exists, but certain factors may increase the likelihood of developing it. Primarily, these include genetics, pollution and environmental factors.

There are a number of things that can increase your risk of getting asthma:

  • Having a family history
  • Having an allergy
  • Exposure to tobacco smoke
  • Mother smoking during pregnancy
  • Being born prematurely
  • Having had bronchiolitis


In some cases, asthma can be caused by substances exposed at work. This is called occupational asthma. Some of its common causes are:

  • Latex
  • Wood dust
  • Animals
  • Flour or grain dust
  • Isocyanates (chemicals in spray paint)
  • Colophony

What can trigger Asthma?

Triggers are irritants that disturb the airways and bring forth asthma symptoms. These can vary from person to person. In most cases, people have more than one trigger. The most common triggers include:

  • House dust mites
  • Animal fur
  • Pollen
  • Tobacco smoke
  • Exercise
  • Cold air
  • Chest infections

What is a Reliever Inhaler?

As the name suggests, reliever inhalers are inhalers that provide instant relief. They are quick-relief inhalers. Reliever inhalers are used to relieve asthma symptoms in a short amount of time. This inhaler contains a medicine known as a short-acting beta2-agonist. It works by calming the muscles surrounding the airways that get restricted when triggered. Once settled, the airways return to their normal state, which makes it much easier to breathe for the individual.

Most reliever inhalers contain salbutamol and terbutaline.

What is a Preventer Inhaler?

Similarly, preventer inhalers work to prevent the symptoms of asthma. This helps reduce the amount of inflammation in the airways to prevent asthma attacks from occurring over time. Preventer inhalers are intended for the daily management of the symptoms of asthma. However, it is crucial to use the preventer inhaler as instructed by the GP to limit the risk of an asthma attack occurring ideally. You should take the daily dose, even if you do not feel an asthma attack coming on.

Typically, the preventer inhaler contains a medicine known as an inhaled corticosteroid.

Which inhaler is right for me?

In order to determine the ideal inhaler for you, you will need to consult your primary healthcare provider. They will assess your medical history and symptoms. Initially, you may be prescribed a reliever inhaler that you will be instructed to use whenever the first symptoms of an asthma are triggered. However, you may be prescribed a preventative inhaler if your case is severe.

Note that if you require the assistance of your reliever inhaler three or more times a week, you may be prescribed an additional inhaler to help prevent symptoms from getting triggered.

What types of asthma are there?

There are different types of asthma:

Allergic asthma: Allergens like pets, pollen and dust mites trigger this allergic asthma.

Exercise-induced asthma: This is triggered by physical exertion or intense exercise.

Cough-Variant Asthma: This is triggered by exercise and respiratory infections, causing persistent severe coughing.

Occupational Asthma: It results from workplace triggers causing difficulty breathing.

Nighttime (Nocturnal) Asthma: Nighttime asthma is very common, with breathing troubles, coughing and wheezing symptoms.

Thunderstorm Asthma: This can happen when a heavy storm hits on a high pollen count day, causing asthma symptoms.

How can I prevent an asthma attack?

You can prevent asthma attacks by following the tips below:

  • Identify your asthma triggers and avoid that situation.
  • Stay away from any allergens.
  • Avoid smoke of any type.
  • Make your house allergy-proof by proper cleaning.
  • Get your asthma vaccinations, allergy shots, and medications on time.
  • Follow your doctor's advice.

Who can get asthma?

Anyone can develop asthma at any age. This includes people of all ethnic groups, races and genders. Most people with asthma often have allergies or are exposed to tobacco smoke. This means passive smokers (exposed to someone smoking) and thirdhand smokers (exposed to clothing or surfaces with smoke) are more likely to get asthma. However, children and adults who grew up living in urban areas or who are obese are at a greater risk of developing asthma. Additionally, people who work in polluted areas may develop asthma.  

Can I buy asthma inhalers over the counter?

No, you cannot buy asthma inhalers over the counter in UK. Asthma inhalers are prescription medicines. You can get them legally if you have a doctor approved prescription. You can contact Click Pharmacy and fill out a short medical assessment form. Our prescriber will then prescribe the medicine most suitable for you. The asthma inhalers are sent directly to your address quickly and in discreet packaging through Royal Mail 1st class or next day delivery service.

Authored by

Last reviewed 11 April 2023

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