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Breathing problem self care

If you have any breathing problems, and you smoke you should quit.

Call 13 78 48 or go to the Quitline website.

If you have any medication for breathing problems, such as puffers, use them as directed by your pharmacist or doctor. You can also:

  • take care of yourself and any underlying cause of feeling short of breath
  • stay calm and stand or sit up straight, which helps the air get in and out more easily
  • avoid pollution
  • avoid anything to which you are allergic
  • lose weight if you are overweight
  • have a plan for what to do if things get worse.

Not sure what to do next?

If you are still concerned about your breathing problems, why not use healthdirect’s online Symptom Checker to get advice on when to seek medical attention.

The Symptom Checker guides you to the next appropriate healthcare steps, whether it’s self care, talking to a health professional, going to a hospital or calling triple zero (000).

Last reviewed: August 2017

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