Problems with using Peak Flow Meters

Improper usage of your peak flow meter unit will give you incorrect readings. Check the instructions for your unit and follow them as accurately and consistently as possible.

Don't rely on a single reading on a single day to give you good information. You need to use a peak flow meter over a number of days, consistently and at the same time, in order to be able to use the information as a guide to your condition. A peak flow meter is not a 'one shot' deal. It is a tool that you will use in an ongoing way, to better understand your condition and manage it more effectively.

At the same time, a peak flow meter will not solve all your asthma or allergy challenges. Peak flow meters can give you good information. While the information from your meter is valuable, you don't want to over do it. Over usage can make your shortness of breath worse, and that's something that most of us don't want.
Remember to trust your own knowledge of your condition. You know your body better than anyone else. If you've been living with asthma or allergies for some time, you know when you feel good and when you don't. Focusing on and relying upon peak flow readings too much, can lead you to ignore other valuable information from body sensations or emotional signals. As a result, you might not respond adequately to critical changes in your asthma.

Finally, peak flow meters do fail. If your readings don't make sense, you should have yourself checked out. For instance, if you feel much better than your peak flows indicate ensure you have your physician or nurse check you with another meter. When it comes to your ability to breathe effectively make sure that you have good information.

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