Family Medicine Specialists of Texas
Primary Care Physicians located in Katy, TX
There are few experiences more frightening than having trouble breathing. At Family Medicine Specialists of Texas, the team is experienced in helping men, women, and children manage asthma and emphysema, two common conditions that cause shortness of breath. To get a diagnosis for your shortness of breath or to get help living with asthma or emphysema, call or use the online booking tool today to schedule an appointment at the office in Katy, Texas.
Asthma and Emphysema Q & A
What is asthma?
Asthma is a condition that causes your airways to become narrow, swollen, and inflamed. When you have asthma, you find it harder to move air in and out of your lungs, which interferes with breathing and causes symptoms like coughing, wheezing, and chest tightness.
People with asthma have certain sensitivities, or “triggers,” that set off their symptoms, known as “asthma attacks” when they suddenly worsen. Triggers can be certain kinds of weather, airborne allergens like pollen, or irritants like smoke and chemical fumes. Your symptoms may also worsen when you have an illness that makes breathing more difficult when you exercise, or even when you cry or laugh because these reactions interfere with how you breathe normally.
Asthma is a chronic condition that can affect people of any age. Though there’s no cure, several options for controlling the symptoms can easily fit into your everyday life.
How is asthma treated?
Treatment for asthma may include:
Long-term control medications
To control your asthma and reduce the frequency of asthma attacks, you take a daily medication either orally or via inhalation.
These medications, which you usually take through a handheld pump called an inhaler, provide immediate relief from asthma attacks by opening your airways.
If your asthma gets worse from exposure to allergens, your treatment may include medication to control your body’s immune response to the allergens.
Family Medicine Specialists of Texas may recommend keeping your home free of dust, using a dehumidifier or air conditioner, and cleaning regularly to reduce your exposure to asthma triggers.
Your asthma symptoms can change over time, so it’s important to stay in contact with the practice and make sure you’re getting the treatment that’s best for you.
What is emphysema?
Like asthma, emphysema causes shortness of breath, but it’s a distinct condition. Emphysema results from the air sacs in your lungs becoming damaged, usually from smoking. When you have emphysema, your body doesn’t get enough oxygen.
Emphysema is a long-term, progressive disease, meaning the symptoms come on slowly and gradually worsen over time. You may have emphysema for years and not notice it until the shortness of breath begins interfering with your life.
There’s no cure for emphysema, but Family Medicine Specialists of Texas can get you on a course of treatment that’ll prevent further lung damage and reduce your symptoms, including:
- Quitting smoking, with the help of Family Medicine Specialists of Texas, can greatly slow the progression of emphysema
- Bronchodilators, which open your airways, often administered through an inhaler
- Oxygen, which you can receive via a small, portable, battery-powered device
- Steroids, which reduce the inflammation in your lungs
Though asthma and emphysema are often frightening and challenging, the team at Family Medicine Specialists of Texas is here to help. To schedule an appointment, call or use the online booking tool today.
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