Can You Use Someone Else's Inhaler?

Fact Checked

Inhalers are often required to prevent asthma attacks and help those suffering from the condition breathe better. There are many types of asthma medications that come in the form of inhalers. It is not safe to use another person's inhaler for many reasons.


There are three primary types of asthma inhalers: metered dose, dry powder and metered dose spacer. Metered dose allows a person to receive the medication immediately with one inhale. The metered dose spacer keeps the medication in the spacer, so the entire dose may be administered with one or more inhalation. The dry powder inhaler requires one to breathe in fast and deep to receive the medication.


It is unsafe to use another person's inhaler, not only due to the fact that each inhaler requires different actions for administration of the medication, but also because each person requires a different dosage of medicine.


Not only is there a risk of being overmedicated by the inhaler, there is a chance that the person may have an allergy to the medication in it. Both of these conditions could trigger an asthma attack.

Further Concerns

Even if the asthma medication in the other inhaler is the same as a personal inhaler, it is still risky to use. The person who usually uses the inhaler may have a cold, flu or other contagious conditions that could be passed along.


To avoid the risk of an asthma attack or a possible allergic reaction, make sure to keep a personal inhaler at all times. Never use another inhaler as it may cause adverse reactions.