A metered dose inhaler can be used to take quick relief and long-term control medicine. They come in a wide variety of colors. Use a chamber or spacer with the inhaler to ensure the medicine is delivered to the lungs. When using an inhaler with the chamber, take the cap off the inhaler and shake it well. Next, if your inhaler is new or hasn’t been used for a week, prime it by spraying four puffs into the air to make sure the medicine will be delivered. Look inside the chamber to make sure there are no loose parts. Then, place the inhaler into the rubber end of the chamber. It’s good to practice by taking a deep breath and exhaling before actually taking the medicine. Then close the lips and teeth around the mouthpiece. Spray one puff of medicine into the chamber and take a slow deep breath in through the mouth. Hold it for ten seconds then release slowly. Repeat these steps for each puff prescribed by your doctor or nurse and wait at least one minute between each puff. When finished, place the cap back on the inhaler and chamber. If your child uses a steroid inhaler for long-term control, be sure he or she rinses out the mouth after each use. It’s important that you keep track of the number of puffs used. Keep in mind that all inhalers do not have a counter. However, you still must keep track of each puff taken because it’s important to order a refill from your pharmacy before the inhaler is empty. If your inhaler does not have a counter, be aware of how many puffs are available and write the refill date of the inhaler on your calendar to prevent getting caught with an empty inhaler. To clean the chamber, simply hand wash and air dry. The chamber is not dishwasher safe.