What to do in an emergency

Call an ambulance!

If you or someone you are with are struggling to breathe and you feel it is an emergency, dial 111 and ask for an ambulance.

If you know you are asthmatic or suffer from a respiratory disease make sure you tell the dispatcher on the phone and the ambulance officer.

Watch our Asthma First Aid video, to find out what to do in an emergency.

Find out more about Asthma First Aid

Asthma First Aid

The 6 Steps

The 6 steps you need to remember and the “Rule of 6” too!

A    Assess

MILD: Short of breath, wheeze, cough
MODERATE: Loud wheeze, breathing difficulty, can only speak in short sentences
SEVERE: Distressed, gasping for breath, difficulty speaking two words, blueness around the mouth.

S    Sit  Sit the person upright and stay with them. Reassure calmly.

T    Treat   Treat with 6 puffs of the blue inhaler, ideally using a spacer, 1 puff at a time, 6    breaths for each puff

H    Help   If not improving after 6 minutes, call an ambulance. Continue to use the blue inhaler 6 puffs every 6 minutes.

M   Monitor If improving after 6 minutes, keep monitoring. If necessary repeat doses of blue inhaler.

A    All Ok      When free of wheeze, cough and breathlessness return to normal quiet activity.


Remember the rule of Six:

6 doses of medication – 1 puff at a time
6  breaths per puff
6 minute wait


Our Asthma First Aid magnets, sponsored by Natural Insulation, outline the 6 steps and Rule of 6, so that you know how to deal with an asthma first aid situation.

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