Difference Between Nebulizer and Inhaler (With Table)

Inhalation therapy is commonly used to treat respiratory illnesses such as COPD, cystic fibrosis and asthma. The instruments which are used to dispense these drugs can be preventers or relievers, including inhalers and nebulizers.

Nebulizer vs Inhaler

The difference between nebulizers and inhalers comes in the difference between their size and appearances, the way they are being operated, their cost. Other factors also come into play, such as portability, the difference in their uses and side-effects they cause. A nebulizer is a large, bulky appliance. Whereas, Inhalers are compact and easy to carry.

Compressors, such as nebulizers, are used to deliver oxygen or any other compressed air. With the use of a tube, the confined air can be given to your mouth. Nebulizers rely on electricity to function. Thus they’re either battery-powered or plug-in-powered. Because nebulizers are electrical devices that are specifically developed to treat respiratory problems, they are more expensive than inhalers.

Inhalers are metal or plastic devices that carry a pressurised medication solution inside a tin canister. When the user presses the canister, the medication is dispensed in predetermined amounts into the mouth. Inhalers are little plastic devices that operate without the use of power or a battery. Inhalers are less expensive. As a result, they’re useful for folks who have breathing problems.

Comparison Table Between Nebulizer and Inhaler

Parameters of ComparisonNebulizerInhaler
Size and AppearanceBulkier in size and appearance. Small in size and can be held in hands.
Operated via? Operated with the help of electricity, thus they are either battery operated or work with plug-ins.Do not require electricity or battery for their operation.
Cost Expensive and higher cost. Cheaper and cost-effective.
Portability Not portable or travel friendly. Portable, pocket and travel are friendly.
Side effects Tremors, anxiety, severe breathing issues.Poor breathing problems.
UseSevere difficulty in breathing issues, tracheostomy collar. Minor breathing problems or asthma.

What is Nebulizer?

A nebulizer is a device that is often larger in appearance. Compressors, such as nebulizers, are used to deliver oxygen or other compressed air. With the use of a tube, the confined air can be given to the mouth. Nebulizers need electricity to function. Therefore they are either battery-powered or require plug-ins.

Nebulizers are electronic devices that are specifically designed to treat respiratory disorders. As a result, they are more expensive than inhalers. Ambulizers and hospitals both have nebulizers. They are not portable or travel friendly due to their bulkiness.

Because asthma treatments are delivered via nebulizer, nebulizers can induce side effects in patients such as tremors and anxiety if they are not utilised properly. In hospitals and ambulances, nebulizers are commonly used to treat patients who have significant breathing difficulties or who have a tracheostomy collar.

What is Inhaler?

Inhalers are compact and can be carried in one’s hand. Inhalers are devices that contain the medicine solution in a pressurised form inside a tin canister. They are typically made of metals or plastic. When the user presses the canister, the medicine is dispensed in predetermined amounts into the mouth.

Inhalers are little plastic devices that operate without the use of power or batteries. Inhalers are less expensive and more cost-effective. As a result, they’re useful for folks who have respiratory problems. Because the inhaler is tiny, patients can carry it in their pockets wherever they go.

It is also portable and travels friendly due to its compact size. When an inhaler is not utilised correctly in conjunction with breathing, it might result in poor breathing problems for asthma patients—people who suffer from minor respiratory issues or asthma use inhalers daily.

Main Differences Between Nebulizer and Inhaler

  1. A nebulizer is a device that is usually on the bulkier size in appearance. On the other hand, Inhalers are small in size and can be held in hands.
  2. Nebulizers act as compressors which usually contains oxygen or any other compressed air. The contained air can be delivered to the mouth with the help of a tube. On the other hand, Inhalers are devices generally made up of either metals or plastic containing the medicine solution in a pressurised form inside the tin canister. The medicine can be released in fixed doses into the mouth when the user presses the canister.
  3. Nebulizers are operated with the help of electricity. Thus they are either battery operated or work with plug-ins. On the other hand, Inhalers are small plastic devices, and they do not require electricity or a battery for their operation.
  4. Nebulizers are electronic appliances specially designed for addressing respiratory disorders. Hence they are available at a higher cost and are expensive than Inhalers. On the other hand, Inhalers are cost-effective and cheaper. Therefore they come in handy with people having respiratory disorders.
  5. Nebulizers can be found in ambulances or hospitals. As they are bulky, therefore they are not portable or travel friendly. On the other hand, the size of the Inhaler is small. Hence it can be carried in the pocket by the patients anywhere. Due to its small size, it is portable and travel-friendly as well.
  6. If not used correctly, then nebulizers can cause side effects in patients like tremors and anxiety due to the delivery of asthma medicines via nebulizer. On the other hand, If an inhaler is not used correctly in coordination with breathing, then it can cause poor breathing problems for individuals suffering from asthma.
  7. Nebulizers are used extensively for administering patients who face severe difficulty in breathing or who have tracheostomy collars in hospitals and ambulances. On the other hand, inhalers are used in day to day lives by people suffering from minor breathing problems or asthma.

Conclusion

In an ambulance or a hospital, nebulizers can be found. They’re not portable or travel-friendly due to their bulkiness. Because asthma treatments are delivered via nebulizer, nebulizers can produce side effects such as tremors and anxiety in patients if they are not utilised properly. In hospitals and ambulances, nebulizers are frequently used to treat patients with severe breathing difficulties or who have a tracheostomy collar.

However, patients can carry the inhaler in their pockets because of its compact size. It’s compact and travel-friendly because of its modest size. When an inhaler isn’t used appropriately in conjunction with breathing, it might lead to asthma sufferers having trouble breathing. People with moderate respiratory issues or asthma frequently use inhalers in their daily lives.

References

  1. https://www.atsjournals.org/doi/abs/10.1164/ajrccm.163.1.9910042
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0091674981900129
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