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Table 7 The impact of using complementary therapies: benefits of self-help and taking control

From: Complementary therapy use by patients and parents of children with asthma and the implications for NHS care: a qualitative study

"I just started to think 'How can I get a grip on this?' and I worked out that it was for me, as helpful and perhaps sometimes more helpful, to kind of control when my asthma kicks in, to control my breathing rather than reaching for Ventolin, and ever since then I've not really needed to take any medicine, it's sort of breathing controlled..it's just put me in control of it." (AA31, adult female, using self-taught breathing techniques)
I wanted more control of my asthma because my drugs were doing that really..just to have better control without drugs." (TA02, adult male, using Buteyko)
"I'd heard about (Buteyko), and I've read about it, I just felt it would be nice to have something that he could do that would sort of empower him in a way, which it did seem to do" (DC05, mother of boy aged 7, using Buteyko and homeopathy)
"I just stumbled across this Buteyko method of breathing..about control, taking control of it rather than letting it take control of you, and learning how to work through it rather than progressively getting more panicky and out of breath and perpetuating the thing..I certainly feel that if she (daughter) starts getting an attack that she knows how to control it....I think there's a psychological element to it as well, where if you can take control at least part of it yourself, and you feel more in control, you can sort of cope with it more...the controlling of things yourself has got to be a good thing." (DY03, father of 13 year old girl, using Buteyko)
"I think self-help's better than being drugged..it's a lot better if you help yourself because it makes you feel properly better, if that makes sense, like it makes you feel better inside, as well as having the symptoms gone away, because you know you've taken them away yourself." (HY01, girl aged 15, using homeopathy and other therapies)