Asthma Australia has been monitoring the COVID-19 situation since it began in 2020.

 

If you have asthma and have been diagnosed with COVID-19: 

If you have uncontrolled asthma:

Research has found that people with uncontrolled asthma may be more likely to develop severe symptoms and be hospitalised. This includes people with asthma who: 

  • Have been hospitalised in the past 12 months 
  • Have needed a course of oral corticosteroids for their asthma in the past 12 months (e.g. prednisone or prednisolone tablets) 

If either of these apply to you, talk to your doctor about how you can get your asthma under control to reduce your COVID-19 risk. For more information about asthma you can also call us on 1800 ASTHMA (1800 278 462) or email asthmasupport@asthma.org.au. 

What is good asthma control? 

Good asthma control means you: 

  • Have symptoms no more than 2 days a week 
  • Use your reliever no more than 2 days a week 
  • Aren’t limited by your asthma 
  • Don’t get symptoms at night or when you first wake up 

To learn more about good asthma control see: https://asthma.org.au/treatment-diagnosis/live-with-asthma/talk-asthma/  

Asthma and COVID-19 Risk

A lot of scientific research has emerged since the start of the pandemic, showing that people with asthma are not at increased risk of getting COVID-19. In fact, some reports even suggest that people with asthma may generally be less likely to get COVID-19! 

We now understand that having severe or uncontrolled asthma may be a factor that worsens COVID-19 outcomes. If you have recently been hospitalised because of your asthma or needed a course of oral corticosteroids, you may have severe or uncontrolled asthma. 

COVID-19 Symptoms 

Most people with COVID-19 will experience a mild disease. It may be difficult to tell the difference between COVID-19 symptoms and your normal asthma symptoms. If you’re unsure and your normal asthma medicines don’t seem to be working as well as usual, talk to your doctor and consider being tested for COVID-19. 

During the first week of infection symptoms are usually relatively mild, typically sore throat, cough and fever 

Some people, especially children, may have the virus and never show symptoms at all. The virus is most easily passed on to others during the first week of infection.  

During days 4–9 after infection symptoms can worsen, with increasing breathlessness and cough. Stomach symptoms (e.g. pain, diarrhoea) occur in approximately 10% of patients. 

COVID-19 VACCINES AND ASTHMA 

Being vaccinated against COVID-19 is the best way to reduce your risk of complications from the illness.   

Most people in Australia have now been vaccinated and will be eligible for boosters in the coming months. This is welcome news for all Australians as we get back to a more normal life! We are lucky to have access to these high quality and effective vaccines.  

There are four vaccines currently approved for use in Australia:  

AstraZeneca (Vaxzevria)   

Moderna (Spikevax)   

Novavax (Nuvaxovid) 

Pfizer (Cominarty)   

All Australians over the age of 5 years old are currently eligible to be vaccinated. If you or your child have asthma, you should feel confident to get your recommended vaccine.   

There are certain groups of people who may be at higher risk from COVID-19 and should get their vaccine and booster as soon as possible. This includes people living with severe asthma.  

A common question has been about the potential side effects of the vaccine. Common side effects include a sore arm, headache, muscle aches, and tiredness. The vaccine does not cause asthma flare-ups.   

Asthma Australia strongly supports the COVID-19 vaccination program. We encourage people with asthma to feel confident getting the vaccine recommended for them. 

If you have any questions, speak to your doctor or call one of our Asthma Educators on 1800 ASTHMA (1800 278 462).   

Breathe Better Under Your Facemask

Over the past two years, face masks have become a staple of everyday life – serving as a welcome safety measure for many and even as a fashion item for a few. If you’re struggling to breathe with a face mask, you’re not alone – here are some breathing techniques to help. 

Find out more

Face Mask/Coverings- Tips to Ease Into Wearing One

Never before have Australians been faced with mandates on face masks/coverings and it can be both confronting and confusing for people with respiratory conditions. It’s deemed an effective strategy against community transmission of COVID-19, but we understand it’s not that easy for some. Here are a few tips to help

Find out more

Cough Cough, It's my Asthma Not COVID-19

People with asthma can have a dry cough and having asthma often comes hand in hand with hay fever, which causes sneezing and a runny nose, similar symptoms to a cold. But how do you deal with having these symptoms amid a Coronavirus pandemic? If this is you or your child, here is how you can help support them in public.

Find out more

Our Top Tips for Seeing Your GP During Spring and COVID-19 Restrictions

As lovely as spring sounds, it can be a difficult time for people with asthma. Many of us are finding our normal health appointments harder to access – particularly, if we are experiencing symptoms such as difficulty breathing, runny noses or coughing that cross over with the symptoms for COVID-19. 

Find out more

Asthma, COVID-19 & Telehealth: The Doctor is Calling

It can be hard to communicate about certain health issues by phone or video feed. Asthma is different for everyone, and it can be daunting to try and communicate over the phone when you are experiencing asthma symptoms. But given the challenges of COVID-19, we’re helping you gain better outcomes from telehealth for asthma.

Find out more

Nebulisers During COVID-19

Health experts believe the use of a nebuliser may have spread the UK variant of the Coronavirus to others through airborne droplets as a nebuliser aerosolises virus particles.

Find out more

The Asthma Cough

Asthma cough can be challenging. It can be embarrassing or awkward to have an ongoing cough, especially amid increased anxiety over health during COVID-19 times. Here is what you need to know about asthma cough.

Find out more

Still have more questions about asthma and COVID-19?

Speak to an Asthma Educator today by calling 1800 ASTHMA |1800 278 462 

They operate 9:00 am – 5:00 pm Monday to Friday, alternatively, you can book a call here and we’ll have someone call you back as soon as possible during business hours. 

RECEIVE INFORMATION AND UPDATES BY SUBSCRIBING TO OUR ENEWSLETTERS