Local celebs share personal experiences with asthma in new video
They seek to raise awareness on dangers of over-reliance on the blue inhaler
Lifestyle influencer Ang Qiu Ting, better known as Bong Qiu Qiu to her 281,000 Instagram followers, has lived with asthma all of her life.
Three generations of her family suffer from the respiratory condition - her parents, her siblings and her own children.
The 33-year-old said: "I think people don't really have a good understanding of it, and there are a lot of preventive measures people can take.
"Beating the asthma blues can start with a simple first step, and for me, it would be to go see a doctor and really understand how my condition is.
"I feel like people shouldn't let asthma get them down. Asthma won't get me down. It's something we can understand, prevent and manage."
Ang is one of three local personalities featured in an awareness video (https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=1308372719619997&ref=sharing) launched by the Asthma and Allergy Association (AAA) Singapore, a patient-centred organisation for people with asthma and allergies, and the Healthy Lung Initiative, ahead of World Lung Day, which took place on Sept 25.
It is part of the Beat The Asthma Blues campaign, which promotes good asthma management and encourages those with the condition to take a simple step to understand the risks of over-reliance on the blue inhaler, known as Saba (Short-Acting Beta Agonist).
Asthma is a chronic inflammatory airway disease that affects approximately 5 per cent of adults and 20 per cent of children in Singapore.
Using the blue inhaler more than three times a week is an indication that asthma is not under control, putting people at risk of an asthma attack while masking the worsening symptoms.
Singer Taufik Batisah, 39, also appears in the video as his wife has asthma.
He said: "She was in the hospital pretty often when she was younger. But with her doctor's and family's support, she has learnt how to take care of herself.
"She is a really strong person and does not let asthma bring her down or hold her back.
"To anyone who has asthma, I would say to get a proper diagnosis, understand your body and live your best life."
Comedian-influencer Preeti Nair, 27, appears alongside her asthma-stricken mother Sarah Nair to share about the impact asthma has had on their lives.
She said: "I was very young when my mum's asthma was at its worst and remember feeling really scared as a child in primary school.
"When I got older and my mum managed her condition better, I started to understand what asthma really was, and I was glad she was not super reliant on the blue inhaler anymore.
"It would help if your loved ones are aware of your condition, so they can help support you along the way.
"I am really glad to be part of this meaningful campaign and hope that those with asthma can continue to live their lives to the fullest, just like my mum."
According to Dr Adrian Chan, president of the AAA Singapore, a recent survey showed that almost two-thirds of adult respondents with asthma think using the blue inhaler is the best way to manage their asthma.
However, while the blue inhaler helps to deal with symptoms like wheezing and breathlessness, it does not manage the underlying cause of asthma attacks, which is best treated with preventer inhalers (also known as controller inhalers).
Dr Chan said: "We hope that through this video, more patients with asthma are inspired to take action to check their reliance on the blue inhaler, and visit their doctors for advice."