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Emotional Well-being in 2020

Tips for Your Emotional Well-being During the Pandemic

We all react differently to stressful situations. Many of us are so good at forging ahead in the face of adversity that we may not recognize the warning signs that our emotional well-being is compromised.

Emotional well-being is vital to people of all age groups. The year 2020, has been a particularly challenging time for everyone’s emotional well-being as it has been the year of much controversy.  Now is the perfect time to stop and examine this year’s impact on our lives and find ways to improve our emotional health.

Emotional Well-being and How It Relates to Your Health

Being in good health doesn’t only refer to our physical health. Being in good health also involves our emotional and mental well-being.

 

But what is emotional well-being?

 

Simply put, it’s our ability to manage our feelings, both the happy, pleasant ones and the sad, angry, or worrisome ones.

Our emotions can impact our lives in unexpected ways. Some are good and some not so good. Research shows that when we are in a balanced emotional state, learning becomes easier. We are more creative, our productivity increases, and our relationships improve.

Our stress and anxiety levels increase when we are unable to control our emotions. When we are emotionally unbalanced, we are more likely to make bad decisions regarding our health and well-being.

Additionally, emotional stress can weaken our immune system making us more susceptible to viral and bacterial infections and developing chronic illnesses.

That is why learning to deal with emotional stress is so important during these challenging times.

Tips for Improving Our Emotional Well-Being

We live in unprecedented times, and we need to put extra effort into managing our emotions well. Now, emotional well-being doesn’t mean ignoring or avoiding unpleasant or negative feelings. It’s normal to experience feelings of anxiety and sadness, but learning to manage these feelings will help us stay healthy.

 

Manage Your Expectations

 

Disappointment is a fact of life. We’ve all experienced times when a situation didn’t live up to what we imagined.

Many of us set unrealistic expectations on how we would manage our time during the lockdown. Working or studying from home doesn’t mean the day has more than 24 hours, so if you didn’t learn a new language, mastered a musical instrument, or read all the books on your nightstand, that’s fine.

 

Proactively Manage Your Stress

 

It’s normal to have trouble concentrating and keeping ourselves motivated during stressful times, but this can make us feel anxious. Taking control of small things can help us regain a sense of normalcy and manage our stress.

It all starts by taking better care of yourself. Prioritize sleep, eat well, limit junk food, alcohol, and other indulgences, and stay physically active. Also, remember to reach out to family and friends by calling or video chatting with them often.

Getting enough rest and focusing on our physical well-being will help us clear our minds of negative thoughts and balance our emotions.

 

Learn to Identify Your Red Flags

 

Learning to identify the thoughts, physical sensations, and feelings that accompany stress and anxiety is vital.

 

When you feel stressed, take note of your:

 

  • Thoughts (I can’t concentrate, I am not good at this, nothing will ever change)
  • Feelings (sadness, worry, frustration),
  • Physical sensations (upset stomach, tension, or jitters)
  • Actions (emotional eating or drinking too much alcohol)

 

When you can identify these red flags, you can actively change your thoughts, control your physical sensations with breathing techniques, and stop yourself from overindulging.

The CDC provides a list of resources and contacts to help you cope with stress and anxiety. Don’t be afraid to reach out; help is available.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Plan for an Emergency

One thing that weighs heavily on our minds these days is our health and that of our loved ones. Knowing you have access to quality emergency care close to home and at an affordable price gives you peace of mind.

That is the mission of Altus Emergency Centers to provide the best care at the best price. We are here for you when you need us most. We work under strict safety and hygienic protocols. Our centers are conveniently located, so you don’t have to travel far to get the medical attention you need.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Wearing a Mask During Your Workout

Wearing a Mask During Your Workout

Back in September, gyms were allowed to reopen at 75% capacity. This announcement made a lot of us who were eager to start exercising very happy.

However, the reopening measures included the required use of face masks during workouts.  This action raised many concerns among gym members.

Is wearing a mask during your workout a good idea?

Here we will address some of the most frequently asked questions regarding the use of face masks during your workout.

Why Wearing a Mask is Necessary?

Breathing heavier while exercising is almost inevitable. Yet this action increases the risk of viruses aerosolizing and spreading to others more quickly.

Therefore, using a mask is an effective way to slow the spread of infectious diseases, including COVID-19 and the flu.

Is It Safe to Wear a Mask While Exercising?

Yes, it is. However, experts recommend keeping your workout intensity at low to moderate and avoid vigorous exercise while wearing a mask.

The reason is that face masks decrease airflow, affecting your breathing and your body’s natural ability to regulate its temperature.

Suppose you have a preexisting condition and plan to train regularly at a gym. In that case, we recommend you speak to your doctor. Your physician can make recommendations for your specific condition and health history.

What Type of Mask Is Best?

Masks made of moisture-wicking materials such as cotton or polyester blends are best for exercising as they can absorb the sweat. Make sure your mask material is not more than two layers thick.

Avoid using paper or surgical masks as they can quickly breakdown due to the sweat or heavy breathing during exercise.

The CDC guidelines discourage the use of masks with exhalation valves or vents as these don’t prevent the spread of the virus

Additionally, N95 masks are not suitable for exercise routines as they can increase heat and humidity levels and increase breath resistance and overall discomfort in athletes.

It’s a good idea to carry spare masks with you so you can change them once they become damp.

Is It Necessary to Wear a Face Mask If You Are Exercising Outdoors?

Wearing a face mask while you exercise out in the open is unnecessary if you can maintain a safe physical distance from other people who don’t live with you.

However, if you are training with a team or running in a crowded street or park, then yes, we recommend you wear a mask to help prevent the spread of viruses.

What to Expect

While face masks help reduce the chances of spreading viral illnesses, they also affect how our bodies react to exercise.

Most people report experiencing an increase in heart rate while exercising with a mask. This increase in heart rate can increase the exertion rate and decrease performance during aerobic exercise and resistance training.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

When to Seek Medical Attention

When exercising with a mask, beware of these warning signs:

  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Extreme or Unusual Fatigue
  • Shortness of Breath That Does Not Improve During Rest Periods
  • Headache
  • Muscular Weakness
  • Overall Discomfort

If you experience any of the above symptoms, try taking a break. If you notice the symptoms don’t subside or worsen, come to the nearest Altus Emergency Centers immediately for an evaluation.

 

Altus Emergency Centers encourages everyone to maintain a healthy lifestyle that includes regular exercise. However, during these challenging times, adjustments are required.

We urge everyone to adhere to health officials’ recommendations, including using a mask while exercising and maintaining physical distance when possible.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

The Importance of Radiology During an Emergency

The Importance of Emergency Radiology

Emergency radiology is an important subspecialty of medicine that has helped save countless lives in our emergency centers.

The main responsibility of an emergency radiologist is to provide a quality diagnosis of ill or injured patients using CT Scans, X-Rays, and Ultrasound machines.

Happy National Rad Tech Week 2020 to all of our wonderful radiologic tech professionals who are instrumental in helping ER physicians get to the correct diagnosis during an emergency.

Time Factor in Emergency Radiology

In the ER, time can be both our greatest ally and our worst enemy. The first hour after trauma or the beginning of symptoms is considered the golden hour.

When our doctors can accurately diagnose a patient’s condition in that first hour, patient survival rates go up, and the risk of long-term or permanent damage decreases. 

However, for doctors to accurately diagnose a patient’s injury, they rely on the expertise of our emergency radiologists who are always on site, ready to perform the necessary tests.

X-ray emergency radiology

Technology Used in Emergency Radiology

As we mentioned earlier, having the capability to immediately and correctly evaluate and diagnose a patient, helps doctors formulate the best treatment course, which will alleviate the patient’s pain, and save lives.

The key is to have access to the results as quickly as possible. And this is where technology comes in to play. 

All Altus Emergency Centers have access to the most advanced imagining technology, that provides accurate results in minutes, not hours.

CT Scan

CT Scan or CAT Scan provides clear and detailed images of the soft tissue, bones, and blood vessels in the body. 

The images produced by our CT Scans allow our emergency radiologists and physicians to diagnose and treat internal injuries and diseases.

 

CT Scans are recommended in the following cases:

  • To Diagnose Infectious Diseases
  • To Identify Muscle Disorders
  • To Visualize and Evaluate Bone Fractures
  • To Pinpoint the Location of Tumors 
  • To Study the Blood Vessels and Other Internal Structures
  • To Assess the Extent of Internal Injuries and Internal Bleeding
  • To Diagnose Heart Disease

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

X-Rays

X-rays have been used for years to diagnose internal organs and bones. 

At Altus Emergency Centers, we utilize digital x-rays which offer additional benefits compared to conventional x-rays. 

Benefits include lower radiation exposure, and better processing and storing of images.

 

In the ER, X-rays are mainly used to diagnose or evaluate the following conditions:

  • Infections Including Pneumonia
  • Broken Bones
  • Digestive Problems, including Damage to the Stomach or Intestines
  • Diagnose Kidney, Bladder, and Gallstones
  • Blocked Blood Vessels
  • Enlarged Heart
  • Locate Foreign Objects in the Body

Ultrasound

Ultrasound tests use high-frequency sound waves to capture images of the inside of a patient’s body.

The sound frequency used in ultrasounds is inaudible, and it is continuously adjusted during the procedure depending on how deep the tissue or organ being evaluated is. 

High-frequency ultrasounds are ideal for superficial imaging, while low frequencies can penetrate deeper.

 

Doctors may request an ultrasound for a patient when:

  • Abdominal Trauma
  • Acute Abdomen, Liver, Gall Bladder and Urinary Pain
  • Infection
  • Are Pregnant

All our radiology tests are safe, non-invasive, and painless. The best part is results are available within minutes, which allows our doctors to formulate a personalized treatment course for each patient.

In addition to having the most advanced radiology equipment, Altus Emergency Centers employs the best emergency radiologists who have the experience and knowledge necessary to save lives.

Altus Rad Tech Gallery

At Altus, we are blessed to have some of the most brilliant rad techs within our ranks.  We have four locations within our Altus Family:  Altus Baytown ER, Altus Emergency Lake Jackson, Altus Lumberton Hospital and Altus Emergency Waxahachie.  All four facilities are open 24/7 with on-site imaging technology and ER rad tech professionals.  Let’s get to some them!

 

Enjoy a slide show of our rad techs at work and play.  If you should recognize one, don’t be shy about thanking them for the great service they provide to our communities.

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies.  We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times.  After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process.  We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Flu Season Is Here, Let’s Prepare!

Flu Season Is Here, Let’s Prepare!

The turn of the season signals the start of the flu season, an illness we should we never take lightly. However, this year we need to prepare even better as we are still battling a pandemic.

Because COVID-19 is still spreading in our communities, we need to do our best to reduce the spread of other respiratory illnesses like the flu.

The Impact of Flu Season in America

Per CDC estimates, last year’s flu season resulted in:

  • 38 million illnesses
  • 18 million doctor visits
  • 405,000 hospitalizations
  • 22,000 flu-related deaths

Although some groups are more vulnerable than others, the truth is that the influenza virus affects all age groups. For example, last season, the most affected age groups were young children (0-4 years) and adults ranging from 18 to 49.

The Flu, A Cold, Or COVID-19, How to Tell the Difference

Different respiratory viruses cause the common cold, the flu, and COVID-19, but they share some symptoms.

The following chart can help you differentiate the symptoms. However, it’s important to always speak to your doctor if you have severe respiratory symptoms or if you think you may have COVID-19.

Symptoms

Covid-19

Symptoms Can Range from Mild to Severe

Common Cold

Gradual Onset of Symptoms

The Flu

Abrupt Onset of Symptoms

Fever

Common

Rare

Common

Cough

Common

Common

Common

Sore Throat

Sometimes

Common

Common

Shortness of Breath

Sometimes (with mild/moderate infection)

No

No

Fatigue

Sometimes

Sometimes

Sometimes

New Loss of Smell or Taste

Common

Common

Common

Aches and Pains

Sometimes

Sometimes

Common

Headaches

Sometimes

Common

Sometimes

Diarrhea

Rare

No

Sometimes (especially in children)

Sneezing

No

Common

Sometimes

COVID-19 Common Cold or The Flu

You Can Help Prevent the Flu

This year, Altus Emergency Centers is joining the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention #FightFlu campaign to help stop the influenza virus spread.

Preventing the flu starts with each of us, so here is how we can keep ourselves and our loved ones safe:

 

Get Vaccinated!

Getting a yearly flu vaccine is the first line of defense. This year more than ever, it would be best if you got yourself and your family vaccinated.

The CDC recommends everyone 6-months or older get an annual flu vaccine. Together we can protect ourselves, our families, and our neighbors.

 

Wash Your Hands

By now, we’ve all gotten into the excellent habit of washing our hands frequently. Harmful bacteria and viruses thrive on surfaces and objects that our hands come in contact with. If we touch our eyes, nose, or mouth with dirty hands, these germs can enter our bodies and make us sick.

The more often we wash our hands, the less risk we have of getting sick.

 

Keep Your Distance

Like the novel coronavirus, the influenza virus spreads through tiny droplets expelled when an infected person speaks, coughs, or sneezes.

Keeping a physical distance of at least 6-feet between you and others will help reduce the risk of getting the virus.

 

Continue to Wear a Mask in Public

Using a mask in public helps reduce the number of droplets we expel. The more people wear them, the less risk we all have of getting infected.

 

If You Get Sick, Speak to Your Doctor About Antivirals

If you get the flu, your doctor may prescribe antiviral medications. Although they won’t cure, these medicines can reduce symptoms, make illness milder, and shorten the time you are sick.

When to Visit Altus Emergency Center

If you happen to get sick with the flu, you should monitor your symptoms. If they are mild to moderate, you won’t need to visit the ER. However, should you develop any of the following signs, you should immediately come to the nearest Altus Emergency Center.

Influenza is a serious viral respiratory illness that should never be left untreated, as it can quickly develop into other more severe conditions.

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain or severe abdominal pain
  • Confusion
  • Sudden dizziness
  • Vomiting that won’t stop

 

Altus Emergency Centers is committed to helping our communities stay healthy. We are open 24 hours every day of the year. Rest assured, our facilities follow strict sanitazing protocols to ensure all our patients’ safety.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month

National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month

October is National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month (NMAAM). This annual campaign aims to raise the public’s awareness of the dangers of prescription and over-the-counter drug abuse.

Most of us know of the growing drug problem in our communities. But most of us aren’t aware that the fastest-growing drug problem in America isn’t heroin, cocaine, or methamphetamines, its prescription and over-the-counter drugs.

How Big is The Problem?

Most people take prescription medication responsibly; however, there is a growing trend, especially among adolescents and young adults that are misusing prescription drugs.

According to estimates from The National Institute on Drug Abuse:

  • 18 million people have misused prescription medications at least once in the last 12 months
  • 2 million Americans misused prescription pain relievers for the first time within the past year
  • More than 1 million misused prescription stimulants
  • Some 1.5 million misused tranquilizers
  • 271,000 misused sedatives
  • In 2018, 46,802 individuals died from prescription opioids overdose
  • 10,734 Americans died from antidepressant overdose
National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month

Why Is National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month So Important This Year?

The reasons why people misuse or abuse prescription and over-the-counter medication vary. In most cases, easy access to these medications topped the list of reasons.

Other reasons include misinformation on how addictive opioid medications are and the perception that prescription medications are safer and less harmful or addictive than illegal drugs.

The challenges we’ve had to face this year due to the public health care crisis mean many of us are suffering from the effects of extreme stress and anxiety.

Prolonged stress affects every aspect of our lives, from our emotions, behaviors, how we think, and of course, our physical health.

Stress can contribute to the misuse of prescription and over-the-counter medications to try and eliminate or decrease the severity of symptoms such as insomnia, depression, anxiety, and pain.

That is why at Altus Emergency Centers, we are working to raise awareness of the dangers of medicine abuse.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Preventing Medicine Abuse

These are some ways we can help prevent accidental or deliberate prescription drug overdoses in our home.

 

Don’t Hoard Medications and Keep Them Out of Children’s Reach

Many of us are guilty of saving unused medications in our medicine cabinet, yet this habit can have dire consequences.

Hoarding medications at home increases the risk of taking expired medications, which can have serious side effects.

Prescription drug addiction among children is growing. Make sure you speak to your kids about the dangers of taking drugs, even prescription drugs for non-medical purposes.

It would be best if you disposed of your unused medicines through drug take-back programs. Ask your pharmacist if they have such a plan in place.

 

Only Take Medication as Prescribed and Never Self-Medicate

It’s critical to adhere to your doctor’s instructions when taking prescription medications. For over-the-counter medicines, you should always follow the indications of the manufacturer.

The one thing you should avoid is self-medicating. If you feel unwell, call your doctor, visit our ER, or speak to your pharmacist or another trained medical professional. Don’t take medications based on friends or family’s suggestions and avoid miracle cures advertised on websites.

 

Look for Alternatives When Possible

If you feel stressed, anxious, or experiencing pain, rather than reach for the medicine cabinet several times a day, try to find alternative ways to deal with your situation.

Join a support group at your local church or speak to a friend about how you feel. Try getting a massage or do stretching exercises every day to help ease your pain.

National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month

What to Do In Case of an Accidental Overdose

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, accidental overdoses are a leading cause of death among people between 35 and 54.

A drug overdose occurs when we take too much over-the-counter medicine or prescription medication. It can also happen if we take several prescription or over-the-counter drugs at the same time or if we combine them with alcohol.

Symptoms of an overdose can range from mild to life-threatening. Mild symptoms include slurred speech, drowsiness, and unsteadiness.

Severe and life-threatening symptoms require immediate medical attention. Call 911 and ask to be taken to the nearest Altus Emergency Center if you notice the following symptoms:

  • Breathing problems
  • Hallucinations
  • Delusions
  • Seizures
  • Tremors
  • Vomiting
  • Unconsciousness

 

Altus Emergency Centers is here to help you overcome any medical emergency, including drug overdose. When you visit us, we will treat you like family because, to us, you are. We care about your well-being. If you are struggling with stress, anxiety, or drug addiction, we urge you to please reach out and seek help.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

TRICARE ER Family Care – We Care for Our Military and Their Families

We Care for Our Military and Their Families

The very nature of the job of a military person means they will face daily challenges. However, no service member should ever have to worry about their healthcare needs or those of his family being met, especially during an emergency.  It shouldn’t be a challenge to find TRICARE ER Family Care.

A report by news agency Reuters explains how a study revealed how American families with military healthcare are more likely to experience difficulties with healthcare access.

If you are looking for TRICARE ER Family Care, you’ve found it!  Altus Emergency Centers has been a proud TRICARE provider for many years. We believe our brave men and women in uniform should receive the best emergency medical care possible. That is why all our locations accept TRICARE patients. 

The following are some frequently asked questions to help shed light on TRICARE ER Family Care and coverage for veterans, active military, and their families.

Does Your TRICARE Healthcare Plan Cover Emergency Care?

Yes!

TRICARE emergency care coverage includes professional and institutional charges as well as services and supplies administered or prescribed in the emergency room.

TRICARE is very clear that in the event of a medical emergency, you should call 911 and visit an ER, not an urgent care clinic.

Moreover, emergency room care does not require prior authorization. However, TRICARE Prime plan members must contact their primary care provider within 24 hours or the next business day after receiving emergency care at one of our ER centers.

What Does TRICARE Consider an Emergency?

TRICARE covers three types of medical emergencies:

 

Medical Emergency

TRICARE defines a medical emergency as the sudden and unexpected onset of an illness or injury or the worsening of a chronic condition that:

  • Is life-threatening, 
  • Could cause the loss or severe impairment of a limb or eyesight
  • Requires immediate medical attention
  • Manifests painful symptoms requiring medical care to alleviate suffering

 

These are some examples of medical emergencies covered by TRICARE:

  • Cardiac Arrest (No pulse)
  • Injuries with Severe Bleeding
  • Spinal Cord, Neck or Back injuries
  • Severe Chest Pain
  • Severe Eye Injuries
  • Broken Bone
  • Trouble Breathing

Maternity Emergency

A maternity emergency applies to any circumstance that results in a medical complication which puts the mother or baby at risk.

 

Mental Health Emergencies

TRICARE patients diagnosed with a mental disorder can visit our ER when they are thought to be a risk to themselves or others.

Emergency room care does not require prior authorization. However, if the patient is admitted to the hospital as a result of their psychiatric emergency, the incident must be reported to the regional contractor within 24 hours of admission and no more than 72 hours after admission.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Are Pediatric Emergencies Covered?

TRICARE offers several healthcare plans some of which include benefits for family members including children.

  • TRICARE Prime: This is available to active duty and retired service members and their families
  • TRICARE Select: Active duty and retired service members and their families as well as active and non-active reserve, and retired reserve members and their families are eligible
  • TRICARE For Life: Available for beneficiaries who have Medicare Part A and B
  • TRICARE Reserve Select: Intended for members of the Selected Reserve and their families. Recipients must meet certain qualifications
  • TRICARE Retired Select: Available to qualified Retired Reserve members and their families
  • TRICARE Young Adult: This plan is for unmarried or adult children of an eligible sponsor. Beneficiaries must be at least 21 years of age and no older than 26

 

For more information on TRICARE healthcare plans, please visit: https://tricare.mil/Plans/HealthPlans

 

TRICARE members can trust their children’s emergency care to us. All our Emergency Centers have certified pediatric emergency physicians and nurses on staff 24/7 to attend pediatric emergencies. We also provide separate, dedicated pediatric examining rooms and equipment.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we strongly believe the members of our military deserve the best. We provide them the peace of mind of knowing their loved ones are safe and cared for with compassion by professionals who care. 

For this reason, we provide the best emergency care to all members of our military branches and their families.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Stay in Shape Safely During the Pandemic

Stay in Shape Safely During the Pandemic

These past few months have been a roller coaster of emotions brought on by the public health crisis our nation is facing.

Most of us have gone through initial feelings of concern to now feeling anxious, frustrated, sad, and even angry with the situation. And these feelings are not only affecting adults; they are impacting our children as well.

While the extensive physical distancing policies put in place to the slow the spread of COVID-19 are necessary, our bodies and minds still need exercise to stay healthy.

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The Benefits of Exercise

There is a direct relationship between health, diet, and exercise. Maintaining a healthy diet is essential when it comes to our physical, mental, and even social well-being. Yet regular physical activity is equally important.

Having a sedentary lifestyle can increase our risk of developing chronic diseases and permanent loss of movement. Additionally, a lack of physical activity can also harm our immune health and lead to weight gain.

On the other hand, regular aerobic exercise helps improve our mood, boost our confidence and self-image, improve our sleep quality, and relieve stress.

For these reasons, keeping active during the coronavirus pandemic is essential.

Tips for The Whole Family to Exercise at Home

When you think of starting a workout routine at home, you should also consider including your children. Physical activity has proven to improve a child’s physical health, as well as provide cognitive and emotional benefits, including enhancing their attention span and mental and emotional well-being.

Set Realistic Goals

 

Sure, most of us wish we could compete in a triathlon or become a high performing athlete. But one of the top reasons starting a workout routine fails is because we set unrealistic goals.

Setting unattainable short-term goals can crush your family’s motivation. So, start by setting small, easily attainable goals. Make sure to include your kids in the conversation to learn what they wish to attain.

 

Here are some examples of easy goals to set when you first begin:

  • Go for a 30-minute walk around the neighborhood as a family at least five days a week. You can increase the length of your outings progressively.
  • Do three sets of 15 jumping jacks or squats every day. Increase the number the sets as your physical condition improves
  • Hold a plank position for 30 seconds, increase this progressively and make it a competition to see who can hold it the longest

 

If your primary purpose is to lose weight, don’t make the mistake of saying I want to lose 50, 60, or 100 pounds. Slow, steady weight loss provides the most benefits, and it can help you keep the weight off longer.

A good starting point is to set a monthly weight loss goal of 5-10 pounds. Meaning you will lose 1-2 pounds per week, which is very achievable.

The practice of setting small achievable goals can help motivate you and your family and start you on the path of creating long-term healthy habits.

Stay in Shape Safely During the Pandemic

Make it Fun

 

Most of us think of exercise as a necessary evil. We’ve programmed ourselves to think of it as an unpleasant chore on our to-do lists.

But physical activity should and can be fun and enjoyable for everyone in the family. The first thing you should do is add variety to your workouts. If you always do the same exercises, then you will get bored, so include both outdoor and indoor activities. From riding a bike, walking, or swimming if you have a pool, to joining an online workout program you can do from home.

Make sure to include activities that promote flexibility and stretching, as this can help increase your balance and prevent injuries.

 

Here Are Some Ideas for At Home Physical Activities for You and Your Kids

  • Exercises that use your body weight, such as push-ups, pull-ups, planks, and mountain climbers
  • Yoga
  • Jumping Jacks
  • Dancing – Put on your favorite songs and do a dance-off
  • Balancing on one foot – Helps improve balance and muscle strength
  • Hopscotch -You can either use tape or chalk on your floor, driveway, or patio
  • Fill up a balloon or beach ball and don’t let it touch the ground
  • Crab walk or bear crawl races
  • Jump rope
  • Do a Hula Hoop contest

 

Pace Yourself

 

To help prevent injuries, we recommend you start slow and increase both the length and intensity of your workouts progressively.

Trying to do too much at once not only increases your risk of getting injured it can also frustrate your efforts.

Stay in Shape Safely During the Pandemic

Common Exercise Injuries and What to Do About Them

It’s worth mentioning that a workout injury can happen to anyone. Regardless if you are starting or if you are avid gym-goer injuries are part of life so don’t get discouraged if you suffer one.

 

Common workout injuries include:

  • Muscle pull and strain
  • Sprained ankle
  • Wrist sprain or dislocation
  • Shin splint
  • Shoulder injury
  • Knee injuries
  • Tendinitis

If you or your kids get injured while exercising and you experience severe pain, difficulty moving the joint, or have acute inflammation, don’t wait. Visit the nearest Altus Emergency Center to be evaluated by a physician.

 

All our centers are open, and we follow strict safety protocols. When you visit us, you are in the best hands.

Stay in Shape Safely During the Pandemic

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Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

How to Prepare Your Children to Go Back to School

How to Prepare Your Children to Go Back to School

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to upend our daily life and the start of the new school year just a few weeks ahead, stress levels are running high for both parents and children.

School districts continue to weigh learning options for this school year, and we still don’t know when our kids will be back in the classroom. However, there are steps you can take as a parent to help prepare your children for in-person classes.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Structure Your Children’s Day

The first few weeks of school can be chaotic as kids learn to adjust to their new routines. Start by setting a wake-up and sleep time that applies to school days. This way, you can gradually teach your children to wake up earlier and go to bed at the same time every night.

When you wake them up in the morning, have them get dressed and eat breakfast as if they had to go to school.

Also, help your kids plan their day. Establish a schedule for them that includes chores, physical activities, study, and playtime.

Positive Outlook

Kids don’t all feel the same way about school. Some love it and others not so much.

As parents, it’s important to point out the positive aspects of going to school. Bring up the friendship bonds they’ve developed at school, and always try to link their studies to their interests.

Most importantly, listen to your child. Talk openly about their concerns and fears about returning to school and reassure them that both you and their teachers will do everything you can to keep them safe.

How to Prepare Your Children to Go Back to School

Teach Them How They Can Stay Safe

Kids are more aware of their surroundings than many of us think. They can feel the stress and anxiety of grownups, and they see the news. The problem is that they don’t always understand why things happen.

For this reason, it’s important to teach our kids, especially the smaller ones, how harmful germs spread, and how they can make us sick. The critical point, however, is also to teach them how they can keep themselves safe.

So, while you explain that virus and bacteria can enter their system when they touch their eyes, nose, or mouth with dirty hands, you also explain what they can do to keep safe.

  • Help them create the habit of washing their hands with soap and water regularly. You can make up a fun song together or teach them how to blow soap bubbles while they wash their hands.
  • Explain why they shouldn’t touch their faces (eyes, nose, and mouth) with unwashed hands. No need to scare them, simply remind them of how much fun they missed out on the last time they were sick.
  • Teach them about social distancing. Personal boundaries are hard to understand for most kids, but as we get used to our new normal, teaching them about personal space is vital. Find creative ways for them to express how much they care about a classmate or teacher that doesn’t involve hugging or close contact.
  • Not sharing is caring. Children need to understand that Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) cannot be shared with anyone else. You don’t want to send your child to school with a Superman face mask only to have them return home with a Spiderman face mask.
  • Instruct them on the proper way to wear PPE. Show your kids how to put on their face coverings, and how to remove them safely. Insist they always wash their hands before putting on or taking off their PPE
How to Prepare Your Children to Go Back to School

Schedule Check-Ups in Advance

Don’t leave your kids’ medical checkups for last. Call your doctor to schedule a routine checkup well ahead of the start of face to face classes. This way, you will have time to treat any minor condition that can compromise your child’s health at school.

Stay Informed

Health and safety guidelines are continually changing, depending on how COVID-19 is spreading through our communities.

Therefore, establish communication channels with teachers, principals, and other parents to ensure you are up to date with all safety measures.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we know how much you love your children and how you always want what is best for them. That is why all our centers have special pediatric examining rooms, and medical professionals to treat your child when necessary.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

COVID-19, Common Cold or The Flu? How to Tell the Difference

COVID-19, Common Cold or The Flu? How to Tell the Difference

As COVID-19 continues to disrupt our lives, many of us are feeling on edge, and the slightest symptom makes us wonder if we’ve contracted COVID-19.

The common cold, the flu, and COVID-19 are all respiratory illnesses caused by viruses, and some of the symptoms can be very similar. So how do you know which one you have?

Here, we will show the differences so you can know when you need to seek medical help.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

What Causes the Common Cold, The Flu, And COVID-19

The first similarity between all these illnesses is that they are all caused by viruses.

 

Common Cold: The reason we call colds the common cold is that numerous viruses can cause it making it an easy illness to get.

Some of the viruses responsible for the common cold include:

  • The rhinovirus
  • Human parainfluenza
  • Respiratory syncytial virus
  • Various coronaviruses – But not the one that causes COVID-19 

Viruses, including the coronaviruses responsible for the common cold, produce mild symptoms that include a stuffy nose, sore throat, and headaches.

 

The Flu: The influenza virus is what causes the flu. There are many variations of the influenza virus, all of which can cause seasonal viral respiratory infections in your nose, throat, and lungs.

For most, the flu causes mild to moderate symptoms that resolve themselves in two weeks or less. However, some patients can develop serious complications that result in pneumonia and possibly death.

 

COVID-19: The strain of coronavirus responsible for the illness, now known as COVID-19, is new. Scientists have named this new strain as the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2  or SARS-CoV-2.

The symptoms of the SARS-CoV-2 virus are much more severe, resulting in high persistent fevers, cough, trouble breathing, pneumonia, kidney failure, and even death.

Comparing the Symptoms of the Common Cold, The Flu, and COVID-19

The following symptom chart can help you decide if you have a common cold, the flu, or COVID-19. This list of symptoms, however, is not definitive and should only be used as a guide. If you suspect you have COVID-19, please call your doctor or visit one of our centers as soon as possible.

Symptoms

Covid-19

Symptoms Can Range from Mild to Severe

Common Cold

Gradual Onset of Symptoms

The Flu

Abrupt Onset of Symptoms

Fever

Common

Rare

Common

Cough

Common

Common

Common

Sore Throat

Sometimes

Common

Common

Shortness of Breath

Sometimes (with mild/moderate infection)

No

No

Fatigue

Sometimes

Sometimes

Sometimes

New Loss of Smell or Taste

Common

Common

Common

Aches and Pains

Sometimes

Sometimes

Common

Headaches

Sometimes

Common

Sometimes

Diarrhea

Rare

No

Sometimes (especially in children)

Sneezing

No

Common

Sometimes

COVID-19 Common Cold or The Flu

How Can You Be Sure if Your Symptoms Are Those of COVID-19?

Because symptoms of the common cold, the flu, and COVID-19 can overlap, it can be challenging to know when you should worry, and when you shouldn’t.

If you do have COVID-19, prompt diagnosis and treatment can help lower your risk of developing complications.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers a COVID-19 self-checker to help you know when to seek medical attention.

If your self-assessment indicates, a doctor should examine you, call the nearest Altus Emergency Center or use our online check-in form. You will receive a free medical evaluation, and you decide when and where to get tested should you need to.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Recent Signs & Symptoms of COVID-19

Signs & Symptoms of COVID-19

The new coronavirus continues to spread rapidly in some of our communities. By now, most of us know someone who is directly affected by COVID-19, which can raise our levels of anxiety with good reason.

With so much information going around social media, many of us feel at a loss. With the virus continually mutating, and new research becoming available almost every day, the questions linger. How can we know if we have the virus, which are the signs and symptoms to look for before we reach out for help?

At Altus Emergency Centers, we highly recommend you get your information from official sites such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Here we will try to provide you with the most common signs of symptoms of COVID-19 so you can do an initial self-assessment so you can know when to seek medical help.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Early Signs of COVID-19

Although there is no specific order in which symptoms can manifest, some of the most common early signs of infection include:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Tiredness

Common Symptoms of COVID-19

  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Muscle aches
  • Chills
  • Sore throat
  • Runny nose or feeling congested
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Headache

More Recently Discovered Symptoms of COVID-19

Every day as more data becomes available, researchers and doctors are noticing other symptoms of COVID-19.

Some symptoms discovered lately include a new loss of smell or taste and sudden confusion. If you or someone you know develops sudden confusion, you should seek immediate medical help. Sudden confusion could be a sign not only of complications from COVID-19 but also other severe conditions, including stroke.

This past week, researchers in Madrid, Spain, observed tiny round spots in the mouths of COVID-19 patients. These pinpoint round spots called oral petechiae are produced by bleeding blood vessels under the skin.

The patients who showed these lesions also had an external skin rash, which is making dermatologists think this could be a new symptom of COVID-19.

How to Check For COVID-19 Symptoms in Children

Most children experience milder symptoms compared to adults, but some children do develop severe complications from COVID-19. Therefore, you should not underestimate the potential danger to children or wait too long to get medical help when needed.

 

The main symptoms of the novel coronavirus to for in children are:

  • A high fever. Children will feel hot to the touch in the chest or back areas
  • A new, continuous cough. This means frequently coughing for more than one hour or experiencing more coughing episodes in 24 hours
  • Fatigue. Your child may seem lethargic or weak

When to Seek Medical Help

If you know you’ve been in close contact with someone who has the virus, don’t rush to get tested right away.

The virus takes anywhere from 2 to 14 days to incubate, so if you test too early, you may get a false negative result.

If you think you may have the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes COVID-19, self-isolate in your home. If you live with others, confine yourself to one room or side of your home. Don’t let anyone else use the same plates, utensils, or glasses that you are using to prevent spreading the virus.

Call your doctor if you develop any of the symptoms listed above. If you need to come to our ER, we will be happy to treat you. All we ask is that you call ahead so we can take precautions to protect our staff and other patients.

 

You should seek immediate medical help if you develop any of these symptoms:

  • Prolonged or severe trouble breathing
  • Persistent pressure or pain in the chest area
  • Inability to stay awake
  • Confusion
  • Blue lips or face

Altus Emergency Centers are available to treat all patients regardless of symptoms.

We provide a free medical evaluation to all patients who visit us. Based on that medical assessment, our doctors will recommend the best treatment options for you and your family.

We are here for all of you if and when you need us!

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

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