Brown Inhaler: What Is It? Dosage, Comparison To Other Inhalers

Posted March 25, 2020 by Michael Chamberlain - See Editorial Guidelines

One common issue inhaler users come up against are the different colors of inhalers. Patients may be confused about if the color of an inhaler matters, if they can change the color of their inhaler, and so on. For example, what’s the difference between a brown inhaler and a blue or yellow inhaler. 

This article will give a clear overview of brown inhalers, what’s it used for, how it works, dosage, and comparison with other inhalers.

But first, here’s the short summary to get you a fast answer, then we’ll dive into some of the interesting details surrounding brown inhalers and inhaler colors in general.

Brown Inhaler, What Is It

What is a brown inhaler? Brown inhalers are used for the long-term management and prevention of asthmatic symptoms. They are a type of preventer inhaler. They are taken twice a day regularly, even if patients don’t experience any asthmatic symptoms. Unlike blue inhalers, they cannot be used for a quick treatment or sudden asthma attacks.

Inhalers are a common thing many of us use when it comes to the treatment of asthma. Inhalers are manufactured by many pharmaceutical brands and are used by many asthma patients around the world.

Back in the day, there were no real rules as to what colors the manufacturers should use for their inhalers. Inhaler manufacturers were free to use the colors they like.

However, these colors often seem to confuse asthma specialists, patients, and other healthcare professionals, which resulted in a regulated color-coded system.

This was requested to make it easy for patients to identify which color inhalers they should be using for which kind of asthma treatment. So, now different colors of inhalers are used for a specific purpose. 

What Is A Brown Inhaler?

A brown inhaler is a low-dose steroid. Steroid inhalers, in general, are used for the management of asthma and its treatment. Meaning, steroid inhalers like brown inhalers reduce the occurrence of asthmatic symptoms and help prevent or avoid any asthmatic conditions from occurring or happening.

In simple terms, a brown inhaler is used for the management of asthmatic symptoms. So, it will not provide any immediate relief but will help asthmatic patients in controlling the asthmatic conditions.

How Does The Brown Inhaler Work?

Brown inhaler falls into the category of preventer inhaler. This is because, as we mentioned earlier, the brown inhaler is used for the control and management of asthma, meaning preventing the conditions of asthma from happening on a long-term basis.

Asthma is a condition that happens when the airways of the lungs narrow down, making it harder to breathe easily. The narrowing of airways is caused by inflammation.

The inflammation causes the airways to swell and will also cause the cells in the airways to create more mucus.

So, over time if asthma continues, the airway wall will become thicker, making it difficult to breathe. Thus, the long-term management of asthma can be done by preventing inflammation from occurring. This is precisely what a brown inhaler does

The brown inhaler releases a small dose of steroids into the airways. This steroid will then gradually desensitize the airways making the airways less likely to be triggered or from getting inflamed.

The medication also reduces the sensitivity of the airways, which then will also prevent the airways from easily getting inflamed. This aids in the airways gradually building up resistance to triggers.

Overall, less inflammation means the airways are not narrowed, making it easy to breathe. So, brown inhalers are used to avoid triggers or inflammations and other asthmatic symptoms from developing or from happening altogether. 

How Long Does It Take For Brown Inhalers To Work?

Brown inhalers do not work immediately. This is because they are designed only to manage, control, and avoid the symptoms of asthma from happening.

So, expecting brown inhalers to work quickly would be asking too much. It roughly takes about two weeks or more for brown inhalers to show any real effect.

For the first few days or at least for the first week of using brown inhalers, you may not see any effect. But the symptoms of asthma should slowly decrease by the second week. For this to happen, a patient needs to take brown inhalers regularly, even if they’re feeling fine.  

Who Is Prescribed With Brown Inhalers?

It’s also important to say that not all with asthma will be treated with brown inhalers. Brown inhalers are prescribed for patients who need asthma conditions to be controlled daily.

Meaning, if you experience asthma symptoms daily or when carrying out daily activities, you may be prescribed with a brown inhaler. For example, patients that may be prescribed brown inhalers may include those who are often disturbed by the symptoms of asthma when sleeping or are easily triggered by chest infections or smoky and dusty atmospheres.

Brown Inhaler Dosage

The starting dosage of the inhaler will be decided by your doctor or healthcare professional. The starting dosage will depend on the severity of the asthma condition you have.

Usually, patients who are prescribed with a small dosage may need to gradually increase the dose if the asthma isn’t being appropriately managed.

Doctors recommend staying on the lowest dose possible. If a high dose doesn’t work, the doctor may recommend a combination inhaler or a higher strength of steroids.

On average, the dosage is two times a day. Brown inhalers should be taken twice daily, once in the morning and once in the evening. It’s again important to say that you should regularly take these doses even if you don’t feel any asthma symptoms.

This is because the purpose of brown inhalers is to manage, control, and prevent asthma symptoms and not to immediately cure it.

Comparison With Other Colors Of Inhalers

Brown Inhaler

Many patients wonder if the blue inhaler can be switched with a brown inhaler to provide immediate relief.

Unlike brown inhalers, the blue inhaler is used for the short-term or as an instant remedy for asthma symptoms. This includes conditions like asthma attacks for which brown inhalers cannot be used. 

However, the blue inhaler falls into the category of reliever inhalers. Reliever inhalers are used for quick treatment and relief from sudden asthma symptoms like coughing, wheezing, and tightness in the chest.

Most of the other colors of inhalers such as yellow, orange, red, green, and purple are similar to brown inhalers, which are used for the management, prevention, and control of asthma symptoms.

All these types of inhalers, including brown inhalers, fall into the category of preventer inhalers.

To Finish

We hope this has been useful in understanding the use of the brown inhaler, as well as the differences between other inhalers. 

Do you use asthma inhalers? If so, then Prescription Hope can help.

If you’re having trouble affording your asthma medications, then we can help. Prescription Hope utilizes patient assistance programs to help individuals obtain their prescription medications at a set, affordable cost. Click here to enroll now and let us save you money on your prescription bills!



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