A peak flow meter is a device that is used by people with asthma to measure how well air moves out of the lungs during exhalation. This measurement is called your peak expiratory flow rate (PEFR), a number that details how open the airways are; as asthma gets worse, the PEFR decreases.
If you have asthma, knowing your PEFR is absolutely essential: if you notice your numbers decreasing, you'll know that something is causing your airways to narrow, helping you to learn what triggers your asthma and act quickly in case of an attack. Additionally, when a peak flow meter is used in conjunction with your asthma action plan, you'll be able to better determine when to take your rescue inhaler or other medications. Here's how to use a peak flow meter properly, and ensure you receive the most accurate reading possible.
Remember, knowing your PEFR on a good day will help you determine if your lungs are having a bad day. When you notice your readings dwindling below 80% of your personal best, consult your asthma action plan and take more frequent readings - and if symptoms worsen, call your doctor! If you don't have a peak flow meter, do your lungs a favor and check out our selection - this is one device you absolutely need!