Many patients mix up their steroid inhalers and rescue inhalers, and at times will use the steroid inhaler when they are short of breath. I teach my patients to keep their steroid inhaler with their toothbrush. It helps them remember to use it twice a day, every day (not p.r.n), and they can brush their teeth afterward instead of rinsing their mouth. I use it to show how the steroid inhaler helps keep their lungs clean, just as the toothbrush helps keep their teeth clean.—LISA SCHWARTZ, NP, Boston (209-5)


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