How Many Puffs Of An Inhaler Can Kill You

How Many Puffs Of An Inhaler Can Kill You


Life is surely devastating for those suffering from long-term ailments who must use medications daily to maintain their treatment. How many puffs of an inhaler can kill you is a question that is associated with pulmonary disorders.

Especially if we talk about the respiratory and cardiac diseases, we will know that these are the ones that are the longest prevailing diseases. Sometimes they might prevail for a lifetime. Thus you will be restricted to medication utilization for your whole life.

This is not a desired situation, and in any case and people would like to avoid having such conditions. If we let you know that these long-term medications have lasting side effects on your body, you will surely not believe the fact. In this article, you will get to know how many puffs of an inhaler are enough to take your life.

What is an inhaler

An inhaler is a dosage form that is utilized to deliver the drug to patients with pulmonary disorders. In this dosage form, the patient has to inhale the required dose after regular intervals to ensure that their therapeutic needs are met. In most cases, these inhalers are designed for people with pulmonary disorders.

Unlike the oral and intravenous dosage forms, the inhalers are not quite simple. They bound you to take the dose at the specified time. Also, since you might have the chance to experience an episode on your way, therefore you should keep it with you all the time.

How to get the desired dose

Now you might be wondering that since the inhalers are used for pulmonary diseases, how can you manage the dose of the drug. The inhaler has specified actuators that only release the specific drug amount according to the patient’s needs. The excessive dose can be lethal, and with the under-dose, you might not be able to activate the desired therapeutic effect.

The result of the excessive use

If you are an inhaler-using patient, then there are certain precautions that you should keep in your mind. If you are an asthma patent or have bronchoconstriction, then the excessive usage of the inhaler will cause a condition called bronchospasm. This condition might last for the time being.

What is a bronchospasm

During the bronchospasm, airways are narrowed, and as a result, you experience shortness of breath. If the medication is taken in toxic amounts, you can surely say that the bronchospasm can lead to death ultimately.

Why bronchospasm takes place

You might wonder why bronchospasm occurs in the first place while taking the medication. So it is actually because of the delivery of the drug. Since once you have puffed or inhaled your medicine, it needs a certain time to reach the lungs. During this drug delivery, the lungs’ airways are narrowed, and the patient might experience breathing difficulties r in other cases leading to death.

How many puffs of an inhaler can kill you

The number of puffs that have the toxic effect is different in the case of every patient since it differs with the type of the inhaler releasing the specified dose. But most probably, 4 puffs of the inhaler are enough to make you feel shortness of breath and bronchospasm.

The conditions affecting the dosage of the patients

Now you might be wondering what are conditions that have an impact on a person utilizing the albuterol or the inhaler drugs. Below we have mentioned a few conditions that differ with every patient:

  • Age
  • Weight
  • Height
  • Heath condition
  • Prevailing diseases
  • Drug profile
  • The severity of the disease

The side effects of inhaler usage

The side effects of the increased inhaler usage are different for every patient. In most cases, all the generalized side effects do not appear in a similar patient in case of toxicity, but you might get most of the symptoms. Some of the generalized side effects of using excessive inhaler medicines are mentioned below for the enhancement of your knowledge:

  • Dry mouth
  • Chest pain
  • Tremors
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Fast or irregular heartbeats
  • Feeling light-headed
  • Seizures and convulsions

The combination dose

In most cases, the inhaler medicines are given to the patient along with a steroidal medicine that helps enhance the medication’s effect. Thus, if you are utilizing the inhaler, it is important to go for the medical dose first and later on utilize the steroidal dose. If you use the steroidal dose first, then you might not be able to achieve the desired results.

Why use inhalers

Although there are different types of dosage forms available in the form of intravenous, intramuscular, oral, and inter-dermal drugs. The question arises that why go for the inhalers. Thus if we take a look, then we will come to know that the people who are suffering from COPD or, in other words, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder use inhalers to deliver the drug directly into the lungs.

Drugs used in inhalers

If we look at the drug included in most cases, we will come across beta-agonists, anti-cholinergic, and combination inhalers.

Mechanism of drug function

If we look at the mechanism of the functioning of the drug delivered through the inhalers, we will know that the drug is delivered directly into the pulmonary pathways once the patient inhales it. The drug travels straight into the lungs and reaches the alveoli.

The systemic circulation 

The alveoli are balloon-like structures that have blood vessels wrapped around them. Also, the wall of the alveoli is very thin, or in some cases, they are said to be one cell thick. Because of the reduced thickness, the drug can easily cross the barrier and enter the blood vessel. Thus we can say that to achieve immediate systemic circulation, the inhalation of the drug is also as important as the IV route.

Also Read: Who Is The Right Candidate For A Mommy Makeover?


How many puffs of an inhaler can kill you is a question that has variable answers, and with the change in the prevailing conditions and the condition of the patient, the number of witnesses a change. Thus we can say that getting a definite answer is not our cup of tea.


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