Imagine that you’re in front of a room and about to give a speech or presentation. All of a sudden, you’re hit with shortness of breath, wheezing and tingling in the fingers, and everyone’s eyes are on you.
As an asthmatic, Kristin Chenoweth knows the feeling firsthand. In the middle of a Broadway performance in 2012, Chenoweth, who was diagnosed with nonpersistent asthma 10 years ago, felt an asthma attack coming on. Thankfully, the Tony Award winner kept her medication close by.
“Fortunately, I found an opportunity during my performance to sneak off stage to my dressing room where I used my rescue inhaler,” says Chenoweth, who in March 2014 went public with her condition as a spokesperson for Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America.
Simple as it might sound, Chenoweth found that keeping an inhaler on her at all times is the most fail-safe way of staying on top of her asthma. Specifically, she recommends using an inhaler that has a dose counter, which lets you know how much medication that you have left, so you can refill it before it runs out.
Beyond keeping track of her medication, Chenoweth says remembering to relax and clear her mind also can prevent her asthma from popping up at inopportune times.
“Rather than think about all of my ongoing projects, I try to focus on one task at a time to help minimize the stress in my life,” she says.