Re: How do you tell if it's really asthma?
During some of my worst times, like what you seem to be going through, I've actually asked my doctors that exact same question.
With asthma it can be a tough call. Sometimes it takes a doctor actually listening to your lungs to tell. I know when I get upper respiratory infections it can really exaspirate my asthma. When I find my asthma traeatment isn't working, I've gone in to the doctor more than once in a week. Not being able to breathe can be really really scary. Sometimes they will give me additional breathing treatments. Sometimes I've been put on Prednisone when the other asthma meds aren't getting things under control. One year when things were really bad, I went in repeatedly over a period of weeks and each time found out I'd caught something else on top of what I already had. (very unusual for me.) Eventually, I also ended up with a nebulizer at home as well.
Anyway, my doctor told me to come in as frequently as I needed to until I was better. It made me feel like I truly did have a problem that needed to be resolved and that I wasn't being a hypocondriac.
If you really do feel like the treatment isn't helping and you are continuing to have severe problems, by all means go see your doc again.
If you have an upper respiratory infection, the antibiotics sometimes take a bit to kick in. In the meantime, you do need to get your asthma under better control. Do you have an asthma action plan? If not, you might ask your doctor about getting one established. Asthma action plans can help you decide when it is time to take further actions. I've posted on them a couple times and will bump one of my old posts. There is also a lot of good information on them on the web.
Wishing you well,
Asthma, Allergies, severe LPR/GERD, Anemia, TMJD, Hearing Loss, Ulnar Impaction Syndrome, Shoulder Impingement--both shoulders, Benign Joint Hypermobility, possible Ehlers Danlos Syndrome