Albuterol vs Ventolin: Which Inhaler is Better for Your Child With Asthma?

Albuterol vs Ventolin: Which Inhaler is Better for Your Child With Asthma?

If you’re a parent whose child suffers from asthma, you’ve probably heard the words Albuterol and Ventolin many times. These two different types of inhalers may have you wondering which one is the best for your child.

When your child suffers from asthma symptoms or an attack, your first response is probably to grab an inhaler. Inhalers have been proven to be the best thing to provide instant relief from an asthma attack.

Albuterol and Ventolin inhalers both contain drugs that will help your child feel better after an attack. Read on to see a comparison of Albuterol vs Ventolin and which might be better for your child with asthma.

Albuterol vs Ventolin

You may be a little confused about the differences between these two types of inhalers. On December 31, 2008, a federal ban on chlorofluorocarbons (CFC) went into effect. CFCs are harmful to the environment and propel generic Albuterol inhalers.

That’s when Ventolin inhalers were created. Ventolin inhalers are HFA inhalers instead of CFC propelled. These inhalers are a better alternative because the propellants used are much more eco-friendly.

Both Albuterol and Ventolin contain the same active ingredients and both work just as effectively.

Albuterol

Albuterol is a drug that acts by relaxing the bronchial muscles and dilating the air passages. This increases the air flow in your child’s lungs and makes breathing easier. This is especially helpful after an asthma attack, when your child may have difficulty breathing.

Recommended Dosage for Children

Children are the most susceptible to suffering from drug overdose. This is why it’s particularly important to take precautions when using inhalers on children. Here are the recommended dosages for children when using Albuterol inhalers.

For children under the age of four, the use of Albuterol inhalers should not be used. Young children may not be able to breathe through an inhaler properly

For children between 4 and 12, inhalers can be used. The recommended dose for an inhaler is one to two puffs every four to six hours.

What Does Albuterol Do?

The lungs are divided into hundreds of small air sacs. These air sacs are supplied with blood vessels and are the main site of gas exchange.

When your child suffers from asthma, these air passages get constricted due to inflammation. This restriction reduces air flow and makes it difficult for your child to breathe.

There are smooth muscles that surround these air passages. These muscles can change the diameter of the passages by contracting and relaxing.

These muscles contain a large amount of beta-2 receptors. These beta-2 receptors are the target of the drug Albuterol.

Albuterol causes stimulation of these beta-2 receptors, which lead to the activation of an enzyme that increases cyclic AMP. Cyclic AMP reduces the concentration of calcium ions, which are responsible for the constriction of those smooth muscles.

So basically, once the level of calcium is reduced, the smooth muscles around the air passages begin to relax, leading to larger respiratory passages. This is how Albuterol provides fast relief for your child when they have an asthma attack.

Side Effects

There can be many side effects of the drug Albuterol. As always, be very cautious of overdosing when administering this drug to your child. Always follow the dosage instructions and keep an eye on how your child is reacting to the drug.

Common side effects include:

  • Nausea
  • Insomnia
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Headaches
  • Leg cramps
  • Muscle weakness

Serious side effects include:

  • Chest pain
  • Muscle pain
  • Severe dizziness
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Skin rashes or hives
  • Irregular heartbeats
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Worsening of symptoms
  • Swelling of lips, face, and throat

Ventolin

As mentioned above, Ventolin is a brand name for the generic Albuterol. Unlike Albuterol, which is propelled by environmentally harmful CFCs, Ventolin is propelled by HFA.

Another name for Ventolin is Albuterol Sulphate. Like the generic Albuterol drug, it’s also a beta-2 agonist. Studies from the FDA have shown that patients have reported the HFA Ventolin inhaler emits a finer mist then a CFC inhaler, making it easier to inhale.

Recommended Dosage for Children

For children under the age of four, the use of Ventolin inhalers should not be used. Young children may not be able to breathe through an inhaler properly.

For children between four and 12, inhalers can be used. The recommended dose for an inhaler is one to two puffs three to four times a day.

What Does Ventolin Do?

Ventolin is a beta-2 agonist. It targets the beta-2 receptors of the muscles surrounding the air passageways, resulting in their relaxation. When the muscles are relaxed, the diameter of the air passages is increased which helps improve airflow.

When the passageways allow easier access to air, your child will feel immediate relief from any asthma symptoms or any asthma attacks. This is why inhalers remain one of the most effective and efficient ways to provide relief for an asthma attack.

Side Effects

There can be many side effects when using a Ventolin inhaler. As always, be very cautious of overdosing when administering this drug to your child. Always follow the dosage instructions and keep an eye on how your child is reacting.

Common side effects include:

  • Nausea
  • Dry mouth
  • Mild headache
  • Muscle cramps

Serious side effects include:

  • Fainting
  • Wheezing
  • Severe dizziness
  • Skin rashes or hives
  • Irregular heartbeats
  • Extreme muscle weakness
  • Swelling of lips and throat
  • Difficulty swallowing and breathing

Conclusion

Both Albuterol and Ventolin have the same active ingredients and are equally effective. However, when comparing Albuterol vs Ventolin, Ventolin is a much safer choice compared to generic Albuterol because it’s more eco-friendly and has fewer side effects.

As with any medication, please consult your family doctor or pediatrician to make sure you’re administering the inhaler correctly and in the correct dosage amounts. When it comes to your child, you want to make sure you’re giving the best and safest option.

There are also several options out there that can help you find the most affordable choice for your budget, as many local pharmacies may overcharge on their prescription prices.

Check us out for more information on medication for your child’s asthma needs.

Which Medication Do You Prefer?

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Comments (1)

Hfa134a in Ventolin metered dose inhaler is still very environmentally damaging. Equivalent to about 30kg co2 per inhaler. Much Better to use a dry powder inhaler like ventolin accuhaler which is more like 1kg.

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