Asthma—a chronic disease that affects the bronchial tubes (airways) of the body—makes it considerably difficult for individuals with the condition to breathe. If you are one of the over 25 million people in the United States who has asthma, you may already be familiar with the common symptoms of the disease. These signs include:
- Feeling short of breath
You may also know what an asthma attack (also called an asthma episode or asthma flare-up) is, or even what one feels like. Acute occurrences with symptoms such as bronchospasm (tight chest), inflamed airways, severe shortness of breath, wheezing, rapid breathing, and other uncomfortable side effects, can occur at any time and are usually unprovoked. However, you can take steps towards preventing them. Preventing asthma attacks starts with:
1. Identifying & Avoiding Asthma Attack Triggers
To reduce the risk of an asthma attack, you can try to avoid certain triggers. Things to look out for include:
- Air pollution
- Intensive exercise
- Heavy fragrances
- The cold or flu
- Cold air
Many of these triggers may be difficult to avoid in daily life, so you can try to keep an asthma diary to keep track of any specific environmental or emotional triggers that cause an asthma attack or flare-up. Try to keep your distance from allergens and smoke as best as possible, and do what you can to stay healthy and well to prevent colds that may be more likely to bring on an asthma attack. You can also consider getting your annual flu shot (or, potentially, immunotherapy vaccines if recommended by your doctor) to keep your asthma from getting worse.
2. Talk to a Medical Professional About an Asthma Action Plan
Sometimes, even taking proper care to prevent asthma attacks isn’t enough to keep them from happening regularly. To improve your chances of preventing asthma attacks, you may wish to speak to a healthcare professional about your asthma so that they may prescribe certain asthma medications or recommend an asthma action plan.
Your doctor will work out the specifics of your plan, but common recommendations may include taking asthma medications as prescribed (even if you’re feeling okay), keeping an inhaler on you at all times, knowing which medications to take if you notice symptoms, and knowing when to call the doctor if an asthma attack strikes.
Talk to The Professionals at PhysicianOne Urgent Care
If you have asthma or suspect that you may have it, the team of healthcare specialists at PhysicianOne Urgent Care are here to help. We can diagnose this respiratory condition and provide necessary treatment options, all without requiring you to go out of your way to get the quality care you need.
At PhysicianOne Urgent Care, we fill the gap between traditional hospital emergency rooms and doctor’s offices by offering walk-in care, longer hours, and the immediate treatment of urgent, but not life-threatening emergencies—like an asthma attack. If you would like to learn more about how to prevent an asthma attack or need prompt, effective treatment for one, contact us or come into one of our centers near you today.