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What are the different types of inhalers?

The devices that deliver your inhaled medications are classified in three categories:

1. The metered-dose inhaler (MDI) and the holding chamber

With an MDI (also called inhaler or puffer), the medication is dispensed by pressing down on the canister, which releases a spray of medication at a set dose. When using an MDI you need to coordinate your inhalation with the activation of the inhaler. A holding chamber helps more medicine reach the airways and decreases the amount of medicine remaining in the mouth and throat.

2. The dry powder inhalers (DPI)

These devices deliver medication as a powder to your lungs when you inhale it. For example: Breezhaler, Diskus, Ellipta, Genuair, Handihaler, Turbuhaler, Twisthaler.

3. Soft Mist Inhalers (SMI)

This is a propellant-free inhaler that releases medication slowly and gently, making it easy to inhale it into your lungs as you do not need to inhale forcefully for it to reach your airways. For example: Respimat.

How to use a metered-dose inhaler (MDI)

How to use an MDI with a valved holding chamber with mask

How to use your Respimat

How to use your Breezhaler

How to use your Diskus

How to use your Ellipta

How to use your Genuair

How to use your Handihaler

How to use your Turbuhaler

How to use your Twisthaler