- Record asthma symptoms and peak expiratory flow (PEF) readings
- Compare PEF readings with your asthma zones
- Keep track of how often you use medications for a sudden asthma attack
Recording this information will help you recognize asthma attacks and head them off before you become seriously ill. Your doctor will also use this diary to evaluate how well your asthma action plan is working.
How Do I Keep a Daily Asthma Diary?
To keep a daily asthma diary, start by printing out a copy of an asthma action plan. We have a blank asthma action plan in this guide.
Next, determine and record your asthma zones. Place this information in your asthma diary so you can refer to it easily.
- Fill in the date.
- Measure PEFs using a peak flow meter, and record the readings in your diary. Be sure to measure PEF before taking your daily asthma medications.
- Compare your PEF readings to your asthma zones.
- If the highest PEF reading is less than 80% of your personal best, you must follow the instructions given by your health care provider in your asthma action plan. Also remember to check PEFs more frequently that day, including an evening PEF.
- Fill in the total number of puffs of the short-acting beta 2-agonist (your rescue or quick-acting inhaler) used over the past 24 hours.
- Rate any asthma symptoms you had during the day.
Remember to take the asthma diary to each doctor visit so your doctor can assess how well your asthma treatment plan is working.