Asthma medications can be categorized into a few general drug groups. Members within each group are considered more or less interchangeable. Here is a summary of the common medications used in asthma treatment.
Cromolyn sodium is a unique medication with anti-inflammatory effects in the lungs. If taken regularly, it is capable of decreasing asthma symptoms.
Beta 2 Agonists are bronchodilators. They relax smooth muscles around the bronchial tubes allowing air to move more freely.
Antihistamines may have some beneficial effects in the treatment of asthma. But the benefits are very small compared with more established medications.
Anticholinergics are drugs have been used for centuries in herbal remedies for asthma. Newer versions of this drug have resolved previous side effects.
Oral steroids are very effective in treating asthma. Despite their effectiveness, oral corticosteroids carry the risk of side effects, if taken long term.