urgent care crosby tx

What you can do to Have a Safe Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving is a notorious day for divulgence and overeating. But with Thanksgiving also comes the risk of accident, hazards, and illness that can lead to a visit to an urgent care center for treatment. 

So what can you do to help you avoid a trip to urgent care on one of the most festive holidays of the year? Our physicians have some suggestions to keep you safe and healthy this Thanksgiving. 

How Can I Prevent Food Borne Illness?

Many turkeys carry bacteria, with the most common being salmonella. If undercooked, the bacteria can cause the following symptoms: 

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Abdominal discomfort

If not appropriately treated, salmonella poisoning can be life-threatening. 

However, if you cook your turkey correctly, then you can prevent an outbreak of the illness. It is recommended the turkey be cooked to at least 165 degrees and checked often with a thermometer. By following directions, you can keep all safe when serving Thanksgiving dinner. 

How Can I Prevent Overeating?

Nutritionists offer several suggestions to avoid overeating on Thanksgiving day. Not only does overeating lead to discomfort, but it can lead you to give up on your diet entirely through the rest of the holiday season. It doesn’t have to be that way! Here are some common tips to prevent overeating: 

  • Eat a protein-filled breakfast in the morning
  • Choose to eat off of a smaller plate
  • Be mindful of portion sizes
  • Carefully select what foods you want to divulge and balance it out with some healthy choices

What About Salt Intake?

Some Thanksgiving foods are seasoned excessively with salt. For many, it may just lead to excess thirst, but it can place stress on the body for those with some health conditions. Those with congestive heart failure, kidney disease, or chronic edema are particularly at risk. 

Emergency rooms and urgent cares see a spike the day after the holidays for patients with these chronic diseases because symptoms worsen.

If you do not have a chronic condition, try to be mindful of any loved ones who do, offering alternative dishes or limiting the salt you put in your dishes when cooking. 

How to be Safe with Alcohol Consumption

Not only does alcohol contribute to slips and falls on Thanksgiving, but it can increase the chances of other accidents. 

Of course, the most important thing to do is never to drink and drive. Either designate a sober driver or plan to stay the night if you drink more than what is considered safe. If you have a safety plan for alcohol consumption, drink plenty of water and spread out how much you drink over the day. 

Also, consider that alcohol consumption can be related to overeating at Thanksgiving. When your inhibitions are affected, you may eat more than intended or be inclined to eat those leftovers later on during the night. 

Another deterrent to drinking too much alcohol is the dreaded hangover. Though the symptoms usually can be managed at home, some urgent care centers see a spike the day after holidays as patients are dehydrated or have gastrointestinal upset. Some heavy, chronic drinkers can also be at risk for alcoholic seizures. If you have a family member who has difficulty managing their drinking, try to be supportive and encourage responsible drinking. 

Urgentcare MDs Is Here if You Need Medical Attention This Thanksgiving

No matter the injury or illness, you can seek medical attention at Urgent Care MDs. We are available to treat minor emergencies, acute illnesses, and injuries. For medical consultations, you can visit:

or 

We also offer primary care in Baytown & Crosby

PrimeCareMDs in Baytown

2655 West Baker Road

Baytown, Texas 77521

PrimeCareMDs in Crosby

14405 FM 2100, Suite B2

Crosby, TX 77532

Many families want to make sure they are safe against COVID-19 before they get together. We offer COVID testing, so you can ensure no one is exposed to the virus this Thanksgiving.

In addition, we provide:

Get in touch with us! By offering services by appointment or walk-ins, we are here and happy to help you stay safe and healthy this holiday season. We look forward to helping you and your family.

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

diabetic neuropathy

What Are the Early Signs of Diabetes?

According to the latest data, at least 10% of Americans have diabetes. Meanwhile, around 88 million American adults are prediabetic. Although new diabetes cases have seen an overall decrease in the last 20 years, there is a rise in new cases among the youth. Unfortunately, diabetes remains to be one of the most common chronic diseases and leading causes of death and disability in the US.

Type 1 diabetes is typically diagnosed earlier among children aged 4 to 7 years old who have a family history of diabetes or a gene that increases their risk for developing the disease. 

Meanwhile, type 2 diabetes may develop later in life and is common among people who has a family history of diabetes and are overweight or obese.

It’s important to keep an eye for symptoms of diabetes and follow prevention measures especially if you have a family history of the disease. In this post, your trusted team of primary care doctors in Crosby, TX, shares the early signs of diabetes to watch out for and what you should do if you notice symptoms.

12 Early Signs of Diabetes

Diabetes types 1 and 2 generally show the same symptoms. If you have a history of diabetes in your family, it’s necessary to watch out for these symptoms on yourself and your loved ones. Detecting diabetes earlier will help in managing the symptoms and disease itself.

1. Frequent Urination (Polyuria)

Frequent or excessive urination may indicate that there is a lot of sugar in the blood, causing it to “spill” into the urine. This happens when the kidneys have a hard time keeping up with the amount of glucose it needs to process. As such, the kidneys will produce urine more often to dump the excess sugar.

2. Increased Thirst

Being thirsty often and excessively is another early sign of diabetes. It is associated with having high blood sugar levels and the fact that diabetics urinate frequently. Often, drinking won’t seem to satisfy the thirst.

3. Episodes of Extreme Hunger

People with high blood sugar levels tend to experience intense hunger, also known as polyphagia. Typically, the body uses glucose to feed the cells. However, when your body is unable to process sugar normally, your cells will starve. As a result, the body will constantly look for a source of energy, prompting you to eat again and again.

4. Nerve Pain and Muscle Numbness

People with type 2 diabetes may often experience numbness in their hands, feet, fingers, and toes. This sensation signifies nerve damage or more specifically, diabetic neuropathy.

5. Slow Wound Healing

If a person has a wound that doesn’t seem to get better or is healing slower than normal, it’s possible that they have high blood sugar levels. Over time, having excessive sugar in the blood causes blood vessels to narrow. As a result, blood circulation slows down. This restricts the flow of nutrients and oxygen needed for wound healing.

6. Blurry Vision

People with unmanaged diabetes can experience blurring of vision early on. A sudden spike in blood sugar can affect the small blood vessels in the eyes, pushing fluid into the eye lens. Although vision blurriness often resolves quickly or after a while, having high blood sugar levels for a prolonged period of time puts one at risk for diabetic retinopathy, which can lead to blindness.

7. Skin Discoloration and Thickening

People with type 2 diabetes may have discoloration and thickening in the folds of their skin. Scientifically known as acanthosis nigricans, this usually affects the neck, armpits, and groin area. This is caused by the excess insulin in the blood.

8. Recurring Infections

Anyone can get fungal or bacterial infections, but people with type 2 diabetes are more susceptible to getting them more often. For one, because they urinate more frequently, they tend to have urinary tract infections and yeast infections. They are also prone to fungal infections caused by the candida fungus. Diabetes patients can also get styes, boils, carbuncles, and folliculitis more often than non-diabetics.

9. Skin Itchiness

One of the first symptoms that a person has high blood sugar levels is extreme skin itchiness. This is caused by poor blood circulation, skin dryness,and  fungal or yeast infection.

10. Mouth Dryness

Drying of the mouth is also one of the most common symptoms of diabetes. Experts are yet to understand its connection with diabetes, but it is highly likely related to the extreme thirstiness and excessive urination that diabetics experience.

11. Extreme Fatigue

Extreme tiredness is among the primary symptoms of diabetes. Experts suspect that it is caused by the fluctuation of blood glucose levels. As such, the body does not get a consistent supply of energy fuel. 

12. Weight Loss

People who lose weight even if they are not trying to are likely diabetic. However, there are other conditions that also cause unintended weight loss. Regardless, it is best to see a doctor once unintended weight loss is observed.

diabetic neuropathy

What to Do If You Are Experiencing Early Signs of Diabetes?

If you or your loved one is experiencing any of these early signs of diabetes, it’s advised to talk to a doctor right away. To determine whether you have diabetes, a simple blood test to check glucose levels will be done. Although chronic, diabetes is a manageable condition. The earlier you get a diagnosis, the better. It’s important to manage diabetes to reduce the risk of complications, such as kidney failure, heart disease, and eye damage, among others.

For Proper and Timely Diabetes Diagnosis, Consult Our Primary Care Physician in Baytown, TX

The key to successfully managing diabetes and keeping it from affecting your life is to get proper and timely diagnosis. UrgentCare MDs has the capacity to help you determine whether you or your loved one has diabetes or are at risk for getting the disease. We have a wide range of medical services for diagnosing, treating, and managing health conditions including diabetes.

We are open for walk-ins, so we encourage you to visit any of our locations:

PrimeCareMDs in Baytown

2655 West Baker Road

Baytown, Texas 77521

PrimeCareMDs in Crosby

14405 FM 2100, Suite B2

Crosby, TX 77532

Contact us today for any inquiries and to set an appointment. We are here to help you lead a healthier life!

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment.  Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

Halloween Horrors: 5 Common Injuries During Halloween and How to Avoid Them

The Halloween season is just around the corner! This means that it’s that time of the year again for fun costumes, trick or treating, and spooky stories. But no matter how scary these antics are, there are still actual dangers that you or your family might encounter during this month. 

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Halloween season is the 4th most common time where kids get sent to emergency rooms for holiday-related injuries. It was also reported that children aged 5 (and under) attained the most injuries compared to other age groups.

To prevent this from ever happening, one of our leading doctors for urgent care in Crosby will discuss five of the most common Halloween-related injuries and how to avoid them.

urgent care baytown tx halloween
  1. Hand Injuries from Pumpkin Carving

Pumpkin carving has always been a staple event in any Halloween parties or get-togethers. Additionally, creating different Jack-o-lantern designs had probably become a Halloween tradition for many families.

However, you may need to think twice about it now. Based on the survey made by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), pumpkin carving (44%) is one of the most common reasons for hand injuries in kids during the spooky season. This resulted in hundreds of children visiting the ER due to cuts and lacerations on their hands and fingers.

Fortunately, you can easily make it a safe activity by leaving the carving duties to the adults. But you can still make the kids feel included by letting them scoop the seeds out or decorate the lantern afterward.

halloween-injuries-urgent-care-crosby
  1. Trips and Falls Associated With Costumes and Decorations

A dark neighborhood filled with hundreds of trick-or-treating kids is already a disaster waiting to happen. Add their creative yet trip hazard costumes to that, and you’ll have plenty of fall-related accidents later on. So here are some tips on how to prevent foot and ankle injuries at your next trick or treating event:

  • Avoid oversized and long, trailing costumes that pose trip and fall hazards to your kids.
  • Make sure that their mask or head costume contains large eye and nose holes.
  • Bring a flashlight when you roam the streets. 
  • Avoid using sharp or pointy props that might accidentally injure your or other kids.
  • Let your children wear sensible shoes.

Lastly, if you are participating in this year’s trick or treating event, you need to ensure that your decoration placement won’t become a trip hazard for kids.

For example, don’t fill the lawn, porch, or steps with too much decor to avoid obscuring the walkways. You can also ensure that your yard is illuminated enough so trick or treaters can safely navigate it. 

  1. Vehicle Accidents During Trick or Treating

Another harrowing yet common accident during Halloween is vehicular mishaps. This specifically pertains to kids and adults getting hit by a car or motorcycle during trick or treating.

Although some may be due to drunk driving, parents can still take extra measures to save their kids from car accidents. One example is by adding reflective tape to your child’s costume to increase their visibility during the night. 

In addition, you can also let them wear glow stick headbands and bracelets. Just make sure to let them know not to ingest its contents if broken.

  1. Burns and Fire Accidents

Prevent fire-related injuries and accidents by using battery-operated lights in your jack-o-lanterns. Furthermore, keep flammable decorations (e.g., dried flower, crepe paper) away from any open flames in your home. You should also make it a point to teach your kids some fire precautions, such as staying away from open flames or the classic stop, drop, and roll.

  1. Food or Candy-Related Incidents

Don’t get fooled by the seemingly harmless Halloween candies and treats. These sugar-filled snacks can easily make your or your kids’ All Hallows’ Eve a true nightmare一from food allergies to choking incidents.

According to the CDC, 1 in every 13 children developes food allergic reactions that might be deadly. It might not be your kid, but it can be one of the little toddlers who’ll be trick or treating in your home. 

Plus, there’s also the danger of food poisoning during parties, choking on hard candy, and tummy aches caused by too much sugar. So, here are some tips on what you can do to make it a fun and safe evening for everyone:

  • Know your kid’s food allergies.
  • Check the label. Watch out for common allergens included in some treats, like soy (lecithin), milk (whey), peanuts, and wheat. 
  • Inspect their loot. Before your kid indulges in some treats, make sure to check their candy bag for choking hazards (e.g., hard candies, nuts, and gums)
  • Opt for non-food goodies. Forgo the traditional treats and give non-food items to trick or treaters, such as stickers, mini notebooks, or cute pens.
  • Prepare an emergency plan. You never really know when an emergency will happen. So it’s better to be ready by knowing the contact number of your trusted urgent care in Baytown.

Find Out More About Our Quality Services at Urgent Care MDs

We value your safety and welfare may it be a typical day or during All Hallows’ Eve. Urgent Care MDs is open every day, from 9 am to 9 pm, and even on weekends (until 7 pm), to provide immediate treatment for your minor emergencies and injuries. Some of the services and tests we do include:

Skip the long lines in the ER and get the immediate care and assistance you require! Give us a call or schedule an appointment with one of our urgent care physicians. 

You can also visit our primary care in Crosby & Baytown at these convenient locations:

PrimeCareMDs in Baytown

2655 West Baker Road

Baytown, Texas 77521

PrimeCareMDs in Crosby

14405 FM 2100, Suite B2

Crosby, TX 77532

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

COVID testing in Baytown and Crosby,

COVID-19 Vaccines: Everything You Need to Know

As we all know, Covid-19 vaccine programs are already in an advanced stage with millions of people around the world having already been vaccinated. In the United States alone, where the vaccination program started in December 2020, over 170 million people have received at least one dose.

Currently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has authorized and recommended the use of the following vaccines: Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson / Janssen.

And there is good news for those wanting a COVID vaccine in Baytown TX – COVID-19 vaccines will be available soon at Urgent Care MDs. Together with the CDC and the World Health Organization (WHO), we encourage everyone to get the first vaccine available to them. All brands are safe, effective, and offer excellent protection against severe complications of COVID-19.

How do COVID vaccines work?

After recovering from a disease, you can get a certain amount of immunity against it. This is called natural immunity. However, experts do not know how long one’s natural immunity against COVID-19 would last. The risk itself far outweighs the benefits of developing natural immunity against it.

Vaccines, in general, help the body develop immunity against a disease. In the case of COVID-19 vaccines, a fully vaccinated person can become immune to the virus without having to get infected. This is called artificial immunity.

There are different types of vaccines and they all offer strong protection against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. However, antibodies against the virus are not created overnight.

After you get the shot, your body spends the coming weeks producing white blood cells. These include T-lymphocytes, which attack the infected cells in the body, and B-lymphocytes, which produce antibodies to attack the virus. So, if you get infected in the future, your body’s white blood cells can now remember how to fight the virus.

Why is getting vaccinated very important?

Following health protocols such as physical distancing, hand washing, and wearing masks are effective but not sustainable. Prolonged isolation has negative psychological effects and schools and businesses can’t stay closed forever or the economy will suffer. In order to stop the COVID-19 pandemic that has claimed millions of lives, everyone should get vaccinated and practice health protocols at the same time.

For everything to go back to normal, for everyone to enjoy the outdoors and each other’s company, for society to return to how it used to be, everyone should boost their immunity against the virus. This can be achieved through vaccination.

What are the benefits of getting a COVID-19 vaccine?

Here are the benefits you can enjoy from getting vaccinated against COVID:

  • Vaccines can keep you from spreading the virus.
  • Vaccines can prevent you from becoming critically ill if ever you get infected.
  • Vaccines do not only protect you but the people around you as well, especially those who are vulnerable and at risk for developing COVID-19 complications.
  • You can do activities without wearing masks and practicing physical distancing once you are fully vaccinated.

What COVID vaccines are available in the US?

The following brands of vaccines are currently authorized, recommended, and available in the US:

  • Pfizer-BioNTech
  • Moderna
  • Johnson & Johnson / Janssen
Vaccine brandMinimum age to receive the vaccineNumber of dosesYou are fully vaccinated after
Pfizer-BioNTech12 years old2 doses, 21 days apart2 weeks after the second dose
Moderna18 years old2 doses, 28 days apart2 weeks after the second dose
Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen18 years old1 dose2 weeks after the first dose

Answers to common questions about COVID-19 vaccines

To clear misconceptions about the vaccine, here are the answers to frequently asked questions:

Are COVID vaccines safe?

Yes. All the vaccines underwent the required clinical trials and were proven safe and effective before they were approved and authorized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the WHO.

Will I get sick with COVID if I get vaccinated?

No. The vaccines will not give you COVID-19 because they do not contain live SARS-CoV-2 virus.

What are some common side effects of COVID vaccines?

You are going to experience some side effects after you receive the vaccine. These are normal reactions of your body to the vaccine as it starts to build protection against COVID. Although these may affect your ability to perform daily activities, they generally last only for a few days.

The common side effects include:

  • Pain, swelling, and redness in the arm that received the shot
  • Chills
  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Muscle pain
  • Nausea

You may increase your fluid intake and get some rest to ease your discomfort. You can also consult our doctors at UrgentCareMds to know what over-the-counter medicines can help you manage the side effects.

Can I still get COVID after being fully vaccinated?

Fully vaccinated individuals are not 100% immune to COVID-19, so they can still get infected. No vaccine can offer 100% protection, no matter what disease they are used for. However, you are protected from becoming critical and developing severe complications.

Can a vaccinated person give COVID to someone who’s unvaccinated?

There is a slim chance of this happening, but it may happen to those who belong to the vulnerable population. People with poor immune systems, those with chronic health conditions, and the elderly may not have the best response to the vaccines. Studies are still being conducted to monitor the effects of the vaccine on these patients.

Are COVID-19 vaccines safe for pregnant women?

Yes. The CDC encourages pregnant and breastfeeding women to receive the vaccine, especially because they are at an increased risk of developing severe COVID-19 complications than non-pregnant women.

How do I know if I’m fully vaccinated?

This depends on the vaccine:

  • Pfizer-BioNTech – 2 weeks after the second dose
  • Moderna – 2 weeks after the second dose
  • Janssen – 2 weeks after a single dose

Until you are fully vaccinated, you still need to follow minimum health standards for COVID-19.

Where can I get a COVID-19 vaccine near me?

COVID vaccines will be available very soon at Urgent Care MDs. For medical consultations, you can visit:

Baytown Urgent Care

 or 

Crosby Urgent Care  

No appointments are necessary. You don’t have to wait in long lines to receive premium medical care. 

We also offer COVID testing in Baytown and Crosby, TX.

For inquiries, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

Flu, Fever, and Colds

Fever

Fever refers to elevated body temperature. Normal oral measurement is 98.6 F (37 C) or the normal rectal temperature is 99 F (37.2 C). Your normal temperature may actually be 1 F (0.6 C) or more above or below the average of 98.6 F. Fever is not considered medically significant until body temperature is above 100.4 F (38 C). Fever serves as one of the body’s natural defenses against bacteria and viruses. It is a non-specific symptom and can happen in both infectious and non-infectious diseases.

Fevers of 104 F (40 C) or higher demand immediate home treatment and subsequent medical attention, as they can result in body organ damage. It can also cause seizures in children and less commonly in adults. Go to nearest appropriate medical facility if you or your child has a high temperature. It’s best to take age appropriate dose of either acetaminophen or ibuprofen or contact your doctor ASAP if you are not sure what to do. YOUR DOCTOR IS YOUR BEST SOURCE OF MEDICAL INFORMATION. Untreated high temperature can cause side effects and could be a sign of serious underlying disease.

DONT’s

  • Never give aspirin to children or adolescents
  • Never immerse anyone with fever in ICE water
  • Tepid water baths (85 F 30) are OK
  • Wet towel is preferred
  • Never sponge an adult or child with alcohol, as this is dangerous
  • Don’t ignore a restless child with high fever, as kids are susceptible to febrile seizures

Common cold

The common cold, also known as a viral upper respiratory tract infection, is a self-limited contagious illness that can be caused by a number of different types of viruses. More than 200 different types of viruses are known to cause the common cold. In fact, children in preschool and elementary school can have three to 12 colds per year while adolescents and adults typically have two to four colds per year. The common cold is the most frequently occurring illness in the world, and it is a leading cause of doctor visits and missed days from school and work.

Common cold vs. Influenza
Common cold is frequently confused with influenza. The influenza virus causes influenza, while the common cold generally is not. While some of the symptoms of the common cold and influenza may be similar, patients with the common cold typically have a milder illness. Patients with influenza are usually sicker and have a more abrupt onset of illness with fever, chills, headache, body aches, dry cough, and extreme weakness. There is lab testing available at your doctor’s office to differentiate between common cold and influenza when the indication exists.

H1N1

The following is the best resource for up-to-date information and education related to flu for Texans. It’s really a comprehensive website for flu related questions specific to our area.
www.dshs.state.tx.us/txflu/splash/index.html

This CDC article about “H1N1 and You” answers the most commonly asked questions and is an excellent source of information.
www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/qa.htm

Treating Asthma

Dealing with Asthma

Asthma

Asthma is a disease that affects your lungs. It is one of the most common long-term diseases of children, but adults can have asthma too. The symptoms of asthma are wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness and nighttime or early morning coughing. If someone in your family has asthma, you are also more likely to have it. You can control your asthma by knowing the warning signs of an attack, staying away from things that trigger an attack and following the advice of your doctor or other medical professional.

The following are some of the known triggers of asthma:

  • Tobacco Smoke
  • Dust Mites
  • Outdoor Air Pollution
  • Cockroach Allergen
  • Pets
  • Pollens
  • Mold
  • Strenuous physical exercise
  • Some medicines
  • High humidity or freezing temperatures
  • Smoke from burning wood, grass, or other vegetation
  • Some foods and additives
  • Severe emotional conditions

HAVE AN ASTHMA ACTION PLAN!

Important points to remember

  • Don’t wait to seek help if you think you are experiencing an acute asthma flare up that has not responded to your hand held rescue inhaler (albuterol).
  • Take your maintenance Asthma medicine even when you feel JUST FINE.

GO TO THE EMERGENCY ROOM IF:

  • Asthma attack is more severe than usual
  • No relief after appropriate rescue inhaler
  • Blue nail beds are noted
  • Child seem to be using Belly muscles too much (abdominal breathing)
  • Lower ribs seem to retract inward (rib retraction)
  • Any adult asthmatic having symptoms severe enough to keep him/her speaking in full sentences
  • Somnolence, confusion or any altered mental status in a patient experiencing asthma exacerbation is the sign of impending respiratory failure. Call 911 immediately if this happens.
Coping with COPD

Coping with COPD

COPD stands for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. COPD is a long-term lung disease usually caused by smoking. However, there are some other diseases that can cause COPD, even if the patient never smoked.
COPD includes a few lung diseases: the most common are chronic bronchitis and emphysema. Many people with COPD have both of these diseases.

Symptoms

  • Shortness of breath
  • Increased mucus and coughing

Some people with COPD say it feels like they’re breathing through a straw.

What does COPD do to my lungs?
COPD slowly damages your airways, the breathing tubes that go in and out of your lungs. People with COPD have swollen and partly blocked airways. They can also have damage in the air sacs at the tips of their airways.

COPD makes it hard to breathe because:

  • The airways and air sacs in your lungs lose their shape and stretchiness
  • The walls between many of the air sacs are destroyed
  • The walls of the airways become thick and swollen
  • Cells in the airways make more mucus than usual, which blocks the airways

Many people with COPD have emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

Causes
Smoking cigarettes is the main cause of COPD in 80 – 90 % of cases. Other things that can cause COPD are:

  • A rare genetic disorder known as ALPHA 1 ANTI TRYPSINE DEFICENCY
  • Second hand smoke
  • Air pollution (dust or chemicals)
  • Having repeated lung infections as a child

Anyone who smokes, or who smoked in the past, can get COPD. People with Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency, exposure to second-hand smoke or pollution, or many childhood chest infections, can also get it.

People usually notice COPD symptoms when they’re in their 40s, 50s or 60s. Often people think their COPD symptoms – feeling short of breath, wheezing or coughing – are a normal part of getting older.

Warning Signs Of Acute Flare-up

  • Worsening or shortness of breath and wheezing despite adequate medications
  • Increased phlegm production
  • Change in color of phlegm and fever might point towards development of pneumonia

What should you do in case of Flare-up of COPD

For mild cough or mild wheezing related to COPD, stay in air conditioning when it’s very humid outside. Also avoid very cold air. Extreme temperature and high humidity cause a lot of flare-ups. Avoid dust, smoke and other triggers. Call your doctor; he/she may prescribe you a short course of steroids to decrease the inflammation in your lungs, and maybe a short course of antibiotics, depending upon your specific medical issues

WHEN TO SEEK IMMEDIATE MEDICAL CARE

  • When you experience shortness of breath, wheezing and coughing, which does not respond to the usual medications that your doctor has prescribed and you feel that your symptoms are actually getting worse.
  • Unable to speak in full sentences
  • Cynosis (blue discoloration) of finger tips, lips etc
  • Confusion or lethargy