The Ventolin inhaler contains an active ingredient called salbutamol sulfate, which can quickly relieve asthma symptoms like coughing and wheezing. The inhaler relaxes the passage to the lungs, which makes it easier to breathe. Use 1 to 2 puffs at a time when needed. If you are not sure of the right inhaling technique, you can message one of our doctors for advice through your online account.
1 inhaler(s) - £14.00
2 inhaler(s) - £22.00
How to use the Ventolin inhaler
It is recommended to take 2 puffs of the Ventolin inhaler when needed, up to a maximum of 4 times in 24 hours. Should you need to take more, you must visit A&E as you could be having a severe asthma attack. Some people may only need 1 puff to relieve asthma symptoms. When taking a dose, asthma symptoms should begin to go within 5 minutes. Your doctor will advise on how many puffs you should take.
Before you use the Ventolin inhaler for the first time, you must test it first.
- Gently squeeze the sides of the inhaler with your forefinger and thumb to remove the mouthpiece cover.
- Shake the inhaler well and point the mouthpiece away from you.
- Push the canister down which will release two puffs of medicine. Make sure to shake well if you have not used the inhaler for 5 days or longer.
Once you have tested the inhaler to ensure it works, it is important to start breathing as slowly as possible just before you use the inhaler.
- Sit upright or stand when using the inhaler.
- Take off the mouthpiece cover and check the inside and outside to ensure the mouthpiece is clean.
- Shake the inhaler several times so any loose objects are removed, and contents are mixed evenly.
- Hold the inhaler upright. You should do this with your thumb on the base. Breathe out as far as you can. You should not breathe in again yet.
- Place the mouthpiece in your mouth and close your lips around it. Be careful not to bite.
- Breathe in through your mouth. Press down on the top of the canister when breathing in to release a puff of medicine. You should do this while breathing deeply and steadily.
- Hold your breath and take your finger from the top of the inhaler and from your mouth. Continue to hold your breath for a few seconds.
- If you have been advised to take two puffs, wait 30 seconds before taking another. You should keep repeating steps 3 to 7.
- Once finished, you must replace the mouthpiece cover immediately. This will keep out dust.
- Replace the cover. Do this by pushing firmly and clicking into position.
The Ventolin inhaler can be used any time of day or night, with or without food. If you are pregnant, planning to have a baby, or currently breastfeeding, you should ask your doctor for advice before using the inhaler.
If you take more puffs than you should and are concerned about side effects, you should see a doctor as quickly as possible. This could cause you to feel shaky or your heart to beat faster than normal.
If you are struggling to use the Ventolin inhaler, your doctor may recommend using a spacer. These are empty tubes that are normally made from plastic. They can be slotted onto the mouthpiece of your inhaler on one end, with a mouthpiece for you to use on the other end. The medication will collect in the spacer so you can breathe it in without wasting any.
Ventolin is a reliever inhaler that can be used to stop asthma symptoms as they happen. It is normally blue in colour.
You should use your Ventolin if you have been told that you have asthma and you:
- have a tight chest
- are coughing
- are wheezing
- feel out of breath
Ventolin is a salbutamol inhaler brand. Salbutamol is a generic medication. Other brand names for a salbutamol inhaler include Easyhaler, Salbulin, and Salamol. There are no differences between a salbutamol inhaler and Ventolin. They both work the same and include the same active ingredient (salbutamol sulfate). But, generic medication is normally available at a lower cost.
The Ventolin inhaler is a bronchodilator. This means it works by relaxing the bronchi in the lungs, which opens your airways and helps you breathe easier. Ventolin inhalers only provide temporary relief when symptoms happen.
As the Ventolin inhaler contains salbutamol, it is not suitable for people with certain health problems.
You should speak to your doctor before using the Ventolin inhaler if you:
- have had a previous allergic reaction to salbutamol
- take any other medicines
- have high blood pressure
- are taking steroids to treat asthma
- have an overactive thyroid gland
Preventer inhalers and combination inhalers can also be used to treat asthma. A preventer inhaler is different to a reliever inhaler, as it is used every day to prevent symptoms from happening as often. They contain a type of medication known as a corticosteroid and are often brown in colour.
Combination inhalers are a mixture of both types of medication. They contain both a corticosteroid and a long-acting bronchodilator. They are used to prevent symptoms from happening as often, but can also be used to relieve symptoms when they happen. They are usually purple, or red and white in colour.
The Ventolin inhaler is safe to use if your doctor has prescribed it. However, like with any medication, some people may get side effects. These will vary in severity, but you should speak to your doctor as quickly as possible if you:
- have an allergic reaction
- feel your heart beating faster or stronger than normal
Tell your doctor if using Ventolin:
- gives you a headache
- leaves you feeling shaky
- gives you muscle cramps
- irritates your throat or mouth
There are rare and very rare side effects of the Ventolin inhaler too, which include:
- increased blood flow to your extremities (peripheral dilatation)
- low level of potassium in your blood
- changes in behaviour and sleep patterns
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are currently taking, have recently taken, or plan to take other medicines.
In particular, you should tell your doctor if you are taking:
- other medicines for your asthma
- medicines for a fast or irregular heartbeat
Dr Kathryn Basford
Dr Kathryn Basford is a qualified GP who works as a GP in London, as well as with ZAVA. She graduated from the University of Manchester and completed her GP training through Whipps Cross Hospital in London.Meet our doctors
Article created: 16 Sep 2021
Last reviewed: 16 Sep 2021
Bronchodilators (April 2019) NHS (Accessed 24 August 2021)
Salbutamol: inhaler to relieve asthma and breathlessness (October 2018) NHS (Accessed 24 August 2021)
Ventolin Evohaler 100 micrograms – Patient Information Leaflet (PIL) (August 2021) EMC (Accessed 24 August 2021)
Ventolin HFA Inhaler: Uses, Dosage & Side Effects (January 2021) Drugs.com (Accessed 24 August 2021)
(Reviews are for ZAVA UK)