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Your Child’s Health and Wellness Checklist

Your Child’s Health and Wellness Checklist

Children depend on their parents for everything. We know how much effort you as parents put in to provide them with love, food, shelter, clothing, education, and medical care. But despite everything you do, the demands of daily life sometimes make it challenging to cover all the bases when it comes to your children’s well-being.

So, to help you keep track of all the issues concerning your child’s well-being, our health experts have put together this helpful checklist.

Emotional Well-Being

Children are dealing with a lot these days, and it can lead to mental and emotional distress. But unlike physical symptoms, a child’s mental or emotional problems can be harder to identify. But you can learn to recognize some of the signs that your child needs help.

The most important thing in any relationship, including parent-child ones, is communication. Build solid and honest communication channels with your children from a young age. Let them know you they can talk to you about anything.

Signs your Child May Need Help

  • Changes in school performance
  • They are anxious and worry too much
  • They experience long periods of sadness
  • They have persistent nightmares
  • Explosive behavior, including anger or aggression
  • Frequent temper tantrums
  • Intense fear of weight gain
  • Refusing to go to school
  • Changes in sleeping or eating habits
  • Substance abuse

If you notice any of these signs, do some research and learn everything you can about the behavior or symptoms that worry you. Then, reach out to the school or community counselor, don’t be afraid to ask questions, remember the goal is to help your child get well.

Physical Well-Being

Regular Doctor Visits

Schedule routine physicals, including a visit to the eye doctor and dentist for your children at the start of every school year.

Keep up with Your Child’s Vaccination Schedule

Here are some of the immunizations the CDC recommends for children depending on their age:

Babies

  • Hepatitis B
  • Haemophilus influenzae type b disease
  • Pneumococcal disease
  • DTaP
  • Rotavirus
  • Polio

12 to 23 Months

  • Chickenpox (Varicella)
  • Diphtheria, tetanus, and whooping cough (pertussis) (DTaP)
  • Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR)
  • Hepatitis A (HepA)
  • Hepatitis B (HepB)

11 to 12 years

  • Meningococcal conjugate vaccine
  • HPV vaccine
  • Tdap
  • Flu vaccine every flu season

Speak to your pediatrician about which vaccines your child needs.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Teach Them Healthy Habits

Here are some healthy habits you can teach your children that will help them lead a healthy life:

  • How to properly wash their hands
  • Brush and floss their teeth at least twice a day
  • Covering your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing
  • Choosing healthy foods over junk food
  • Exercising regularly
  • Keep their rooms clean and neat

Teach Them Basic First Aid

As your children grow, it’s essential to teach them some basic first aid so they can tend to their minor wounds or assist others when needed.

Teach your children how to clean scrapes properly and use Band-Aids. Also, teach them whom to call for help in case of an emergency, make sure to keep a list of emergency numbers on the fridge. It’s also helpful to teach them how to call 911 and give directions to your home.

COVID-19 Checklist

The pandemic has made parenting even more challenging. Now that schools have reopened, it’s essential to keep your eyes open to spot the first signs of the disease.

  • Check Temperatures Daily – Allow your child to stay home if their temperature is 100.4 degrees or greater. If the fever doesn’t go down, call your doctor
  • Check for COVID-19 Symptoms Daily: Do basic screenings for COVID-19 symptoms of everyone in your household every day
  • Let Them Stay Home: Don’t send your child to school if they are unwell or show any COVID-19 symptoms, instead call your doctor and monitor their symptoms
  • Inform the School: Inform the school immediately if you suspect your child has COVID-19 or if they’ve tested positive for the SARS-CoV2 virus. This way, school officials can notify other parents and isolate teachers and students to prevent further infections.
  • Get Familiar with Community Testing Sites: Learn where to go to get tested if you suspect your child or other family members may have COVID-19
  • Stay Informed: Ask your school for updates on any new COVID-19 policies and procedures

Your child deserves the best in life, and that includes the best medical care possible. That is why our doctors and nurses are trained in pediatric emergencies, and we have specially designed pediatric examining rooms at all our centers.

Altus Emergency Centers will always be there for you and your family if you have a medical emergency.

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 Variants – What You Need to Know

What You Need to Know About COVID-19 Variants

The following article on COVID-19 Variants is based upon official health sources such as WHO, CDC, and Texas Health & Human Services.  With so much information floating around about the pandemic, we hope to be able to break it down to the most frequently asked questions about COVID-19 variants to help clarify a highly complex and quickly changing topic.  We recommend everyone to fact-check anything they hear, see or read with the official healthcare authorities.

Understanding the Variants Video Source: CDC

What is a COVID-19 Variant?

Before we even begin to get into COVID-19 variants, we’ll need to give you a quick biology class to understand what a variant really is.  As long as a virus is transmitted and allowed to thrive from host to host, it is expected to mutate and eventually create new variants.

 

As our human genetic material is called DNA, the virus genetic material is called RNA (ribonucleic acid).  A virus (which is not a living organism) needs to invade a happy and healthy cell in order to reproduce or replicate itself.  When it attacks the cell, it transmits its RNA making it a “sicky cell” and replicates it to basically make more virus-contaminated cells.  As the cells multiply, some errors can occur along the way so that they are not “perfect copies”, these unperfect copies of the original are called mutations.  When enough mutations occur, the strongest ones eventually set themselves apart from the rest (through natural selection) and become the dominant strain, a new variant.  (Source: Tufts University)

 

While there may be many mutations and variants, most will die but the stronger ones that survive can become dominant strains.  In the case of the COVID-19 virus, these are the ones who are being referred to as the “variants of concern”.

COVID-19 Varients of Concern in the US

Now, let’s get to know what the top COVID-19 Variants of Concern are within the US.  Since the COVID-19 virus (SARS-CoV-2) was officially identified by Chinese authorities on January 7, 2020 (source: WHO), there have been four main variants of concern (source: CDC).

Alpha – B.1.1.7

First Identified: United Kingdom

When: November 2020

Spread: Spreads much faster than other variants

Severe illness and death: May potentially cause more people to get sicker and to die

Vaccine: Currently authorized vaccines do work against this variant. Some breakthrough infections in fully vaccinated people are expected but remain rare. All vaccines are particularly effective against severe illness, hospitalization, and death.

Treatments: Treatments are effective against this variant

Beta – B.1.351

First identified: South Africa

When: October 2020

Spread: May spread faster than other variants

Severe illness and death: Current data do not indicate more severe illness or death than other variants

Vaccine: Currently authorized vaccines do work against this variant. Some breakthrough infections are expected but remain rare. All vaccines are particularly effective against severe illness, hospitalization, and death.

Treatments: Certain monoclonal antibody treatments are less effective against this variant

Gamma – P.1

First identified: Japan/Brazil

When: 6 January 2021

Spread: Spreads faster than other variants

Severe illness and death: Current data do not indicate more severe illness or death than other variants

Vaccine: Currently authorized vaccines do work against this variant. Some breakthrough infections are expected but remain rare. All vaccines are particularly effective against severe illness, hospitalization, and death.

Treatments: Certain monoclonal antibody treatments are less effective against this variant

Delta – B.1.617.2

First identified: India

When: Late 2020

Spread: Spreads much faster than other variants

Severe illness and death: May cause more severe cases than the other variants

Vaccine: Infections happen in only a small proportion of people who are fully vaccinated, even with the Delta variant. Some breakthrough infections are expected but remain rare. However, preliminary evidence suggests that fully vaccinated people who do become infected with the Delta variant can spread the virus to others. Learn more here. All vaccines are particularly effective against severe illness, hospitalization, and death.

Treatments: Certain monoclonal antibody treatments are less effective against this variant

Consult the WHO website for an updated list of COVID-19 common, less common, and more severe symptoms.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Is There a Test for a Specific Variant?

You may be wondering, “If I get tested, can they tell which variant I may have?”  The simple answer is, “No” but it’s not that simple.  According to the CDC,

“All COVID-19 tests can detect all variants, but they will not tell you which variant you have.”

 

There are two types of tests:
  • Antigen Tests (Rapid Tests): Involves the detection of protein fragments associated with the virus.
  • PCR (Molecular):  This particular test detects the RNA (virus genetic material as previously described).

 

So basically, if you get an antigen test they cannot determine the specific variant.  However, scientists can track and investigate the COVID-19 variants through genomic sequencing.  As you can see, molecular testing does reveal genetic material that allows researchers to investigate the variants and be on the lookout for new ones.

The CDC answers the question, What is CDC doing to track SARS-COV-2 variants?

 

“In the United States, CDC tracks emerging variants through genomic surveillance with the following approaches:

  • Leading the National SARS-CoV-2 Strain Surveillance (NS3) system. Since November 2020, CDC regularly receives SARS-CoV-2 samples from state health departments and other public health agencies for sequencing, further characterization, and evaluation. On January 25, 2021, the NS3 system was scaled up to process 750 samples per week. Notable strengths of this system are the regular collection of numerous representative specimens from across the country and the characterization of viruses beyond what sequencing alone can provide.
  • Partnering with commercial diagnostic laboratories
  • Collaborating with universities
  • Supporting state, territorial, local and tribal health departments
  • Leading the SARS-CoV-2 Sequencing for Public Health Emergency Response, Epidemiology, and Surveillance (SPHERES) consortium”

 

Imagine all of the samples that the CDC, commercial diagnostic laboratories, and universities get on a daily basis.  That’s a lot of samples!

This helps give researchers the data to continuously look into the variants.  You may ask, “Why is genomic surveillance important for public health?”  Now that we have a good idea about what a variant of concern is, we can talk about the Variant of High Consequence.

What is a Variant of High Consequence?

Right now, the term, “variant of high consequence” is not circulating through the news.  We hope and pray that it never does.  While a variant of concern is basically what it says, causes concern but there are vaccines and treatments available, in the case of a variant of high consequence, there is none.

This would be a variant that would force scientists back to square one to find a new vaccine and treatments.

In other words, a variant of high consequence would render our current countermeasures useless. 

The CDC describes it as follows:

  • Demonstrated failure of diagnostic test targets
  • Evidence to suggest a significant reduction in vaccine effectiveness, a disproportionately high number of vaccine breakthrough cases, or very low vaccine-induced protection against severe disease
  • Significantly reduced susceptibility to multiple Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) or approved therapeutics
  • More severe clinical disease and increased hospitalizations
The good news is that currently there are no COVID-19 Variants of High Consequence.

Source: CDC

However, as it is in its nature, as long as the virus continues to spread, it will most likely continue to mutate into other forms of variants.  Some of the COVID-19 future variants may potentially be much more dangerous than the current variants.

Now is the time to prevent the rise of a COVID-19 Variant of High Consequence.

If you are presently unvaccinated, please take the time to read and educate yourself on the current overcrowded hospitals with so many unvaccinated suffering from severe COVID-19 complications. Vaccines in the US are highly effective, including against all variants including the Delta which is the strongest variant of interest in the US today.

“The COVID-19 vaccines authorized in the United States are highly effective at preventing severe disease and death, including against the Delta variant.” – Source CDC.

For those who are fully vaccinated, if you live or visit a place that is of high transmission you should consider wearing a face mask while indoors to avoid the spread.  To find out the transmission rating of your county, visit the CDC’s COVID Integrated County View.

Together We Can Stop the Spread

At Altus Emergency, we have been through natural disasters and now the pandemic without having closed our doors even once.  It is during these harsh times that we dive into the cause wholeheartedly.

With hospitals being severely overcrowded and emergency rooms closing, we put everything into helping our communities, day in and day out.  This has been a rough time for everyone, we hope and pray that if we all work together to help educate our communities, we can help put an end to this pandemic.  Please keep in mind that the unvaccinated are the most at risk for severe complications of all COVID-19 variants. 

According to health authorities, “Virtually all hospitalizations and deaths continue to be among the unvaccinated.”  Putting an end to this pandemic is in all of our hands.

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 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to care for you and your family 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, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays. 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!

Back to School Tips for 2021

Back to School Tips for 2021

In honor of parents all over Texas who are scrambling to get their kids ready for school, here are some Back to School Tips for 2021.  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.  Now with the COVID-19 Delta variant, parents need all of the help they can get.

School districts continue to weigh learning options for this school year, and we still don’t know when things will be back to normal. 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.

Get to Know About the Delta Variant

The first of our Back to School Tips for 2021 is to get to know more about the Delta variant.  This most recent COVID-19 mutation or variant has quickly become the dominant strain accounting for more than 93% of all new COVID-19 cases in the US. (Source: CDC).

One of the reasons for Delta’s expansion according to the CDC, is that it’s twice as contagious as the previous COVID-19 strains. 

Another reason for its quick rise is that recent studies have shown that the Delta virus is stronger, packing 1000 times the “viral load” than previous COVID variants. As a result, the unvaccinated have been the worst hit and have overrun hospitals and emergency rooms all over Texas.  According to the latest data from Becker’s Hospital Review, during the last 14 days,

Texas hospitals have experienced a 102% increase in COVID-19 hospitalization rates with every 30 out of 100 hospitalizations being COVID-19 related.

With this knowledge in mind, it is important for parents to take the insertion of the Delta variant into consideration when sending their children back to school.

RSV Cases Are Still On the Rise

Hospital overcrowding leads us to our next of the Back to School Tips for 2021.  In our recent news article, CDC WARNING: Rise in RSV Cases in Children and Adults, we alerted our communities on the recent out-of-season spike in respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV, is a common respiratory virus which if left untreated can be deadly. Like most respiratory viruses, RSV is spread by touching an infected surface and by air. In fact, the virus can survive on hard surfaces for many hours. Once infected with RSV, a healthy individual can remain contagious for 3-8 days. However, in some cases, “individuals can continue to spread the virus even after they stop showing symptoms, for as long as 4 weeks.” Source: CDC.

RSV Symptoms

It is vital to know how to recognize RSV signs and symptoms.  These tend to show up within 4-6 days and usually appear in stages.  “In very young infants with RSV, the only symptoms may be irritability, decreased activity, and breathing difficulties.” Source CDC.   The following are the most common RSV signs and symptoms:

  • Runny nose
  • Decrease in appetite
  • Coughing & Sneezing
  • Fever
  • Wheezing and difficulty breathing

Should you or a loved one exhibit any of these RSV symptoms (which do not come all at once), visit your local Altus location to have it evaluated by an ER physician and avoid possible complications.

 

RSV Complications in Infants and Children according to the CDC:

  • Bronchiolitis (inflammation of the small airways in the lung)
  • Pneumonia (infection of the lungs)

Considering that hospitals are packed full, it is important that parents take all necessary steps to safeguard their children from the RSV virus.

Pediatric Emergencies Capability

Texas Schools Reopening Guidelines

Now that we have discussed the current health situation, the next of our Back to School Tips for 2021 is to get to know the Texas Education Agency’s (TEA) reopening guidelines to know what to expect.  According to the Texas Education Agency (TEA) new COVID-19 health guidance :

  • Children are not required to wear facemasks (this is entirely optional)
  • Texas schools are not required to inform parents of positive COVID cases (contact tracing)
  • They are required to notify the Texas Department of State Health Services authorities
  • They are required to notify the parents of the children who came into close contact with the COVID-positive child or teacher.
  • They are required to exclude the child from classes and remote learning for up to 20 days.
  • “For individuals who are determined to be close contacts, a 14-day stay-at-home period was previously advised by the CDC based on the incubation period of the virus” or they may end the period sooner having received “a negative result from a PCR acute infection test.”

If Kids Get Infected with Delta, Are They at Serious Risk?

The following was passed along by the Texas Department of State Health Services from the CDC Stance on the Delta Variant as of July 2021.  Source: CDC Update on COVID-19

“Most children who get COVID19 have less symptoms than adults. However, the Delta variant is more transmissible than other variants, therefore protection against exposure is more important than ever, especially among those who are unvaccinated or too young to be vaccinated.

  • We knowbased on national antibody studiesthat children experience COVID19 infection, even if they have had fewer symptoms. National seroprevalence data show that children (age 017) have the highest level of antibodies of any age group (27.8%).
  • CDC recommends that parents take appropriate protective actions, such as having children older than age 2 who are unvaccinated wear masks in public indoor settings.”

In other words, although children that had been exposed to the virus experienced “low transmission rates”, the data was derived from previous COVID-19 variants and not the Delta.  As children tend to be either asymptomatic or very mild symptoms, they are still potential transmitters of the virus and can endanger those who have not been vaccinated.  For this reason, the most important of our Back to School Tips for 2021 are for parents to take the necessary steps to help prevent and protect their children and their communities.

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.

While PPE is completely optional in Texas, for those parents who consider following the CDC’s recommendations, here are some tips on facemasks:

  • 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

Other tips for preventing the spread of viruses:

  • For current COVID-19 case counts across Texas, please visit the Department of State Health Services dashboard.  If you are in a “hot spot” you will have a greater chance of exposure and transmission.
  • Set up a mom’s network.  While the schools may not be broadly reporting the COVID cases, a mom’s chat network can help keep parents informed.
  • For parents with older kids (ages 12 and up), many school districts are hosting back-to-school COVID-19 vaccination campaigns. Should you wish to get your teen vaccinated, contact your local school district to find out which one may be near you.
  • For younger children, parents may opt to “cocoon them in” which means that they take the steps to ensure that everyone in their close proximity is vaccinated and when they are around others who are not, they consider wearing facemasks and social distancing.

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

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.  Please keep in mind that as long as their are transmissions, the COVID-19 virus will continue to mutate.  Together, we can help end the spread!

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.

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!

Dry Drowning – Facts & How to Save Your Baby

Dry Drowning, Facts, Prevention & When to Go to the ER

Dry Drowning: Preventing Another Tragedy

Back in 2017, the tragic death of a 4-year-old in Texas, shocked us all, when doctors told the parents they suspected the child had died from dry drowning a week after going on a family vacation.  Source: CNN. The medical staff at Altus Emergency Centers extends their condolences to the family of Frankie Delgado. Since then, many parents learned of this potentially fatal emergency, its warning signs and symptoms and were able to help save the lives of their children by getting them to emergency care early on.

Image Source: nydailynews.com

While rare, we would like to take this opportunity to remind parents about the dangers and prevention of dry and secondary drowning to prevent another tragedy.

What is Dry Drowning and Secondary Drowning?

Both dry drowning and secondary or delayed drowning, occur when a child breathes or inhales water. This can happen in a pool, the ocean, a river, or even in the bathtub.

These submersion injuries can affect both adults and children, however, children are more susceptible because of their size.

The terms dry drowning and secondary drowning, are commonly used interchangeably, but they are in fact very different conditions.

 

Dry Drowning

Occurs when the individual takes in a small amount of water through their mouth or nose. This water does not reach the lungs, instead, once it reaches the back of the throat, it causes the vocal cords to spasm and close, causing the airways to shut off, making it hard to breathe. The symptoms of dry-drowning usually happen immediately after the incident in the water.

 

Secondary Drowning

In this type of incident, the airways do not close themselves up, but rather open, letting water into the lungs. Once there, liquid can build up causing inflammation and swelling, making it difficult for the body to get enough oxygen; this condition is known as pulmonary edema. Symptoms of secondary drowning may take between 1 and 24 hours to manifest.

Symptoms of Dry Drowning

Know the Warning Signs

 

Both conditions share many of the same symptoms, the main difference is how fast they manifest. Typical signs of either incident include:

  • Trouble Breathing
  • Coughing
  • Sleepiness or unusual drop in the child’s activity level
  • Chest Pain
  • Vomiting
  • Abnormal irritability

These types of submersion injuries are rare, and there is no cause for parents to panic every time the child comes in contact with a body of water. According to a 2006 study published in the British Medical Journal the percentage of submersion incidents which result in either dry or secondary drowning is between 2% and 5%.

Having said that, parents who spot any of the above symptoms in their child after it has spent time in the water should immediately rush to any of Altus Emergency Centers for evaluation and treatment.

Most of the time, symptoms can be mild and improve on their own, however, there is no way of telling if this this will happen, and because the symptoms can progress rapidly and become life-threatening, it is better to have medical attention sooner rather than later.

How to Prevent Dry Drowning

Prevention Submersion Injuries

 

Prevention is always the goal, these recommendations will not only prevent dry or secondary drowning, but any type of submersion incident.

  • Swimming Lessons: Children who are comfortable in and around water are less likely to panic and breathe or inhale water. The recommended age to start swimming lessons is 4-years.
  • Educate: Teach your child to close their mouth when jumping or diving into a pool to avoid water getting in and causing spasms.
  • Beware of extremely cold water: Instruct your child not to jump or dive into a pool if, the water is extremely cold, the natural response will be to gasp due to the temperature increasing the chances of inhalation. Instead teach them to gradually enter the cold water.
  • Keep a close eye: Incidents can happen in a matter of seconds, never leave your child in a body of water, even if it is the bathtub alone for any reason. Children should always wear flotation devices on boats, or when they are learning to swim.
  • Drugs and Alcohol: Parents of teenagers should ensure their children know and understand the danger involved in swimming under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Knowledge Saves Lives

There is Hope

A toddler from Colorado is alive today because of Frankie Delgado’s story.  Gio, a 2 year old from Colorado demonstrated symptoms of dry drowning and his father, Garon Vega rushed him to an emergency room.  Vega had heard about Frankie’s dry drowning tragedy and was able to recognize similar symptoms after a visit to a community pool.

“The X-rays did show that he had a significant amount of water in his lungs, and that it was a good thing that we brought him in because if we hadn’t have, he wouldn’t have made it through the night,” said Vega.  – Source: Fox6Now. Today, Vega thanks the parents of Frankie Delgado for creating awareness as their story saved his son’s life.

If it Happens, We Can Help

At Altus Emergency Centers, we are strong advocates of education and prevention, but, we also understand that there will be accidents that are unavoidable, and that is the reason our expertly trained staff is available 24/7.

Should you observe any of dry drowning or secondary drowing, there is no time to hesitate, head to our nearest Altus Emergency Center for treatment.

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, 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 for the Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk in, to when you are personally assisted with the billing process.  We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Pediatric Emergencies

Pediatric Emergencies

As parents, one of our biggest fears is that one of our kids will suffer an injury or illness that will require a trip to the emergency room. 

But no matter how well we care for our children, accidents happen every day, and it’s comforting to know that the Altus Emergency staff is ready to provide the best care for your child.

Top Reasons Children Visit our ER

Every year around 30 million children under the age of 18 visit the ER. Luckily, close to 97% of patients receive treatment and are released the same day.  

 

Here are the top reasons why children end up in the emergency room:

 

Upper Respiratory Infections

The upper respiratory system involves the nose, throat, and trachea. The most frequent cases we see relate to sinus infections, laryngitis, and tonsillitis. 

 

Lower Respiratory Infections

Lower respiratory infections affect the bronchi, bronchioles, and alveoli, which make up the lungs. Two of the most common lower respiratory tract infections in children are pneumonia and bronchitis. If you notice your child is having trouble breathing, don’t delay; rush to the nearest Altus Emergency Center for treatment.

 

Ear Infections

Otitis Media is a common infection in children caused by either viruses or bacteria. The infection happens behind the eardrum, so it’s not visible with an external inspection of the ear. 

Fever and ear pain are common signs of otitis media; babies are often unusually fuzzy, especially when lying down when they have an ear infection.

Sprains and Strains

These types of injuries are common among active teens who play sports. Sprains happen when a ligament is torn or overstretched, usually due to a fall or a direct hit to the body. Sprains typically affect the knees, ankles, and wrists.

Strains, on the other hand, are pulls or tears to a muscle or tendon. This type of injury can result from a sudden movement or overuse of a muscle or tendon.

 

Open Wounds to The Extremities

Cuts and lacerations can happen in any part of the body, but they are more frequent in the arms and legs.

Depending on the injured area and the severity of the wound, there may be a great deal of bleeding. Head to the nearest Altus Emergency Center if your child has an injury that won’t stop bleeding or the cut is deep enough to warrant stitches.

 

Fever

You can treat a mild fever at home with age-appropriate fever medications. However, persistent or very high fevers are often indicators of a more severe infection.

Concerns over a fever vary depending on the age of your child

  • Infants under three months: You should visit our ER if their fever reaches 100.4 degrees or if they show any of these signs: trouble breathing, difficulty waking up to feed or not feeding, inconsolable crying, rash, or vomiting.
  • Babies three months to three years: An ER visit is necessary if they have a higher fever over 102.2 degrees, or when the following symptoms accompany their fever: trouble breathing, difficulty waking up, unusually fuzzy or inconsolable, not feeding or eating, not urinating, rash, or they are unable to keep fluids down
  • Children three years and older: A trip to our ER may be necessary if they have a high fever over 102 degrees lasting two or more days, or when any of the following symptoms accompany the fever: abdominal pain, unable to keep fluids down, trouble breathing or swallowing, does not urinate or has a burning sensation while urinating, not eating, rash, stiff neck

 

Bone Fractures

During play, children may fall and break a bone. The bones in the arm tend to suffer the most fractures, but childhood fractures could also happen in other areas, such as the collar bone, leg, foot, and ankle.

Bone fractures are painful and need to be set right by a doctor for them to heal correctly. If you suspect your child may have a broken bone, don’t delay; bring them to our nearest ER for a proper diagnosis and treatment.

When to Take Your Child to the ER

Pediatric emergencies are time-sensitive; the sooner your child gets care, the better their chances of making a full recovery.

Call 911 or bring your child to the nearest Altus Emergency Center if you notice any of the following symptoms:

 

  • Chocking
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Possible poisoning 
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Head injury
  • Injury to the neck or spine
  • Seizures 
  • Severe allergic reactions (anaphylaxis) 
  • Severe burn

 

At Altus Emergency Centers, we care for your child as if they were our own because we view all our patients like family.

Altus Emergency Centers Texas is Here for You 24/7

altus emergency 24 hr ER Texas

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 aid you in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lufkin, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, 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.

Traffic Safety Awareness

Traffic Safety Awareness – Respect and Share the Road

Traffic safety: It’s the difference between life and death.

One of the biggest problems society faces today is coexisting, this problem goes beyond the work place, or family life, it also extends to our roads. Most injuries resulting from car accidents were completely preventable using proper traffic safety. Let’s learn to respect and share the road!
According to the World Health Organization

“About 1.25 million people die each year as a result of road traffic crashes. Road traffic injuries are the leading cause of death among people aged between 15 and 29 years.”

Learning to share the road with cyclists, pedestrians, and other car drivers, is the first step in making our commutes safer and more enjoyable. Traffic safety is not a choice, it saves lives and it’s the law.

With the roads full of parents and children on their way to and from school, it’s particularly important to pay special attention to traffic safety. Altus Emergency Centers urges you to respect traffic signals and speed limits. We are all responsible for making our roads safer, with a little common sense a little courtesy and following the rules, we can all do our part in preventing accidents, whether you are driving a car or motorcycle, are out bicycling, walking, or running be aware of your surroundings and respect your fellow travelers.

Traffic Safety Tips for Pedestrians

  • Never Assume a Driver Has Seen You:  Be aware of cars turning into or getting out of driveways, or parking spaces. Stop, and make sure the driver has seen you before continuing. Also, when you are crossing a street or intersection, make eye contact with the drivers to be sure they have seen you.
  • Use the Sidewalks:  Sidewalks are roads for pedestrians, use them, they are there for your safety. If there are no sidewalks available, always walk facing traffic, and take extra precautions when walking around curves in the road, as visibility for motorist is limited and they may not see you.
  • Use Crosswalks:  If you need to cross a street or intersection, look for a crosswalk, if there none, keep in mind that as a pedestrian, you must yield to all other traffic when crossing, make sure you are crossing in a well-lit area with good visibility.
  • Be Alert:  These days it’s easy for us to become distracted by our mobile devices; these distractions are responsible many accidents. Keep your eyes on the road as you walk or run, if you are listening to music, make sure the volume allows you to still hear what is going on around you.
  • Make Yourself Visible:  This is especially important at night; if you plan to go for a walk, jog, or a run, at night make sure you wear light colored, reflective clothing.
Traffic-Safety-Tips-for-Drivers-Altus-ER-Centers-Texas

Traffic Safety Tips for Drivers

  • End Distracted Driving.  According to the CDC 9 people are killed and more than 1,000 injured in distracted driving caused crashes. Distracted driving is when the conductor becomes distracted from driving. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, 1 in 5 vehicle accidents is caused by driver distraction. Distractions can be: tending to children, eating, searching for something within the car, arguing, talking on the phone and texting. Fortunately, as of September 1st, 2017, texting and driving in Texas illegal.
  • Obey Speed Limits: We understand the need to be on time, and we even understand the thrill of fast driving, but speed limits are in place to safeguard all who travel on that road. Did you know that a pedestrian hit by a car going 40 mph has an 85% chance of being killed, while the risk at 20 mph is only 5%?
  • Expect and look for Pedestrians, Runners, Cyclists, and Motorcycles: Some roads prohibit pedestrians and cyclist but there is still a chance you will encounter one. Drive with the mindset that there might be others on the road, look out for them and respect their space.
  • Respect All Traffic Signals: Come to a complete stop when you encounter a stop sign or red light. Signal your turns and look both ways when changing lanes.
  • Respect Cyclists:  Cyclists cannot ride on sidewalks, they must do so on the road, this means they have the same responsibilities and rights as motorcar drivers. When passing a cyclist always give them at least 3 feet for safety, never honk as you approach them, as this may startle them and cause an accident. Before you open your door make sure there are no cyclists coming that can crash against your door.
  • Never Drive Under the Influence or When Overly Tired: Impaired driving is the leading cause of traffic accidents, if you have been drinking alcohol, have taken any drugs, prescription or otherwise, that can impair your driving, or are exhausted for any reason, do everyone a favor, and call a cab or opt for public transportation.
  • Be a Defensive Driver.  Remember that many drivers DO NOT practice proper traffic safety.  By staying alert to other drivers, you may avoid an accident.  Do not fall into road rage, this can only aggravate the problem.
  • Be Aware of Weather Dangers.  Make sure that your vehicle is rain-ready.  Keep in mind that during a rainstorm you could stand to lose two-thirds of your traction.  With this in mind, please driver slower, two-thirds slower could be a good rule to follow.   Appy the three-second rule during moments of poor visibility to allow yourself a safe stopping distance.

Traffic Safety Tips for Cyclists

  • Follow the Rules of the Road:  As we mentioned before, cyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as other drivers. So, respect traffic signals, come to a complete stop at stop signs and red lights; keep as far right in your lane as you deem safe but avoid riding on the extreme right edge of the road.
  • Be Visible:  Wear bright colored clothes during the day, reflective gear at night, and always ride with lights at night.
  • Be Predictable:  Ride in a straight, predictable manner, avoid unnecessary swerving and sudden stops. Look ahead to spot drains, potholes, or debris on the road, this will give you time to go around them safely.
  • Signal Your Turns:  Use proper hand signals ahead of time to alert other drivers where you are going. Look, signal and look back again when you turn or change lanes.
  • Wear a Helmet:  Helmets only work if worn correctly, make sure your helmet is level and not tilted up, down or to the side. The chin strap should be snug and properly buckled.

COMMON TRAFFIC INJURIES

Turning Your Back on Traffic Safety: The Possible Consequences

A vehicle is not only a means of transportation; it can also be a dangerous weapon. The following are the most common types of traffic injuries:

 

  • Head Injuries:  These can range from contusions, brain lacerations to hemorrhage. As the brain injury is the #1 cause for mortality in accidents, a CT Scan is recommended to get a real assessment of the degree of injury.
  • Spinal Cord Injuries:  These can range from mild to severe cases that may result in disability.
  • Neck Injuries ranging from mild to severe
  • Chest and Airway Injuries
  • Lower Back Injuries
  • Abdominal and Pelvic Injuries
  • Spinal Prolapsed, Slipped or Herniated Discs
  • Shoulder and Arm Injuries
  • Seatbelt Injuries, which can include damage to the shoulder, stomach, chest, ribs, neck, hips.
  • Bone Fractures of all Types
  • Damage to the Heart and Heart Attacks.

What Can Happen in an Accident?

Each time that you’re behind the wheel, you put your life and others’ in your own hands. In order to drive home the urgency of traffic safety, the following is a detailed account of the most common traffic injuries per accident:

  • Frontal Collisions: On frontal collisions fracture/dislocation of the ankles, knee or hip dislocations and femoral fractures. Depending on the severity, head, cervical and spine injuries are common as well.
  • Lateral Collisions:  Compressive pelvic injuries, pulmonary contusion, intra-abdominal solid organ injury and diaphragmatic rupture are common.
  • Rear Collisions:  Cervical spinal injuries are common.
  • Cyclists & Motorcyclists:  Head injuries and fractures of the lower extremities.
  • Pedestrians: Depending on the type of impact bumper, windscreen or ground, the following may occur: lower limb injuries, which can include everything ranging from gashes to fractures, torso, head and spinal injuries.

Source: WorldWideWounds

Let us make a pledge to learn to coexist on our roads, respecting traffic safety laws and our fellow travelers.

Spread the Knowledge to Help Save Lives

Traffic-Safety-Tips-for-Family-Altus-ER-Centers-Texas

Don’t Put Anyone at Risk! Practice Good Traffic Safety.

A traffic accident can range from minor to major injuries.  In many cases, the risk of a more serious injury to the brain or internal organs cannot be determined without having the correct medical equipment that will not be available at urgent care centers or clinics.  This is not the time to wait in line for hours or drive long distances to receive ER care.  Give yourself the best possibility to get well.  If you or someone you know are in a traffic accident visit your nearest Altus Emergency Center immediately.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we are strong advocates of education and prevention. Our expertly trained staff is available 24/7. We are here for you in the event of a medical emergency.

Altus Emergency Centers
Safe, Fast & Always Open 24/7.

Find an Altus ER Near You.

Preventing Car Heatstroke Accidents

Preventing Car Heatstroke Accidents

In Texas we strive to be number one in everything we do, although this is usually a good thing, there are some instances where it is not. In fact, there is one thing we should try to be last in, and that is infant car heatstroke deaths.

Sadly, in the state of Texas, more kids die in hot cars than in any other state in the country according to noheatstroke.org.

The hardest thing to accept about these tragedies is that all these deaths were preventable. We are not trying to place blame on anyone, even the best of parents and caregivers can unknowingly leave a sleeping child inside a car, causing injuries or death.

What we would like to do, is provide parents and caregivers with facts and tips to help avoid these unfortunate accidents. In May we celebrated National Sun Safety Week, which marks the beginning of summer.  Instead of posting tips to enjoy your time in the sun safely, we would like to dedicate this article to preventing car heatstroke accidents so that all families can enjoy the summer months safely.

Preventing Car Heatstroke Accidents

Did You Know?

  • – Car interiors heat up faster than we think, with temperatures reaching 125°F in minutes.
  • 80% of the increase in temperature happens in the first 10 minutes
  • – Cracking the windows does NOT help slow the heating process or decrease the maximum temperature
  • – It doesn’t have to be scorching hot outside for a child to be in danger inside a vehicle, there have been fatal cases of car heatstroke in temperatures as low as 60°F.
  • A child’s body overheats 3-5 times faster than an adult body.
Preventing Car Heatstroke Accidents

What is a Heatstroke?

Heatstroke is a medical emergency condition that can be fatal if it is not promptly and adequately treated. Heatstroke occurs when there is an increase in body temperature, and dehydration often accompanies it.

Symptoms

  • – Body temperature above 104°F and red, hot, dry skin
  • –  There is sign of sweating
  • – A throbbing headache
  • – Rapid, strong pulse
  • – Nausea or vomiting
  • – Confusion
  • – Agitation
  • – Loss of consciousness
Preventing Car Heatstroke Accidents

Safety Tips

According to statistics, more than 55% of car heatstroke cases happen when parents or caregivers unknowingly leave a child in the car. Although parents think this is something that will never happen to them, everyday stresses and unexpected changes in routine can cause a loving parent to forget their child is asleep in the backseat.

 

Follow these safety tips to ensure your child is never left alone in a car:

  • – Train yourself to open the back door of your vehicle whenever you exit it to make sure no one is there, an excellent way to do this is to leave something in the back seat, your purse, your phone, or laptop.
  • – Keep one of your kid’s toys in their car seat and move it to the front of the car to remind yourself your child is with you.
  • – Ask your child’s daycare or school to contact you whenever your child does not arrive on time.

Tips to prevent children from entering cars without you knowing:

  • – Always keep your vehicles locked, even when they are in your driveway or garage.
  • – Don’t leave your keys within reach of children.
  • – If you can’t find your child, check the interior of every car nearby, they may have gone in to play or take a nap.

Image Source: Noheatstroke.org

Know Where to Go In the Event of an Emergency

At Altus Emergency Centers, we care about your child’s safety and well-being, being vigilant and extra cautious can save your child from dying from heatstroke. Please keep in mind that all of our Altus Emergency Centers are open 24/7, with no lines.

If you are ever in need of emergency care, you will not have to wait in line at Altus Emergency Centers.  All of our ERs are fully equipped and open 24/7.

Altus Emergency Centers Texas is Here for You 24/7

altus emergency 24 hr ER Texas

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 aid you in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lufkin, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, 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.

Allergy Triggers to Avoid

Allergy Triggers to Avoid

National Allergy and Asthma Awareness Month

Since 1984, May is National Allergy and Asthma Awareness Month.

These two conditions are often overlooked and not given the importance they deserve. However, according to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), asthma affects more than 24 million people in the United States, including more than 6 million children.

Additionally, allergies are the 6th leading cause of chronic illness, with more than 50 million Americans suffering from allergies each year.

Why Is May National Allergy and Asthma Awareness Month?

Declaring an observance month is never random. May happens to be the peak month for allergies. Asthma and allergies often go hand in hand, so it’s not unusual for someone with asthma to also suffer from allergies.

There is currently no cure for either of these conditions, but educating patients and the public about them can help manage them.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Asthma and Allergies

People can suffer from asthma or allergies, or both. Many myths surround these conditions, so as part of Altus Emergency Centers’ commitment to educate and prevent different health issues, we would like to share some facts.

Asthma facts:

  • Asthma can be hereditary, but it can also affect people who have other allergic conditions and anyone exposed to polluted air, tobacco smoke, or viral respiratory infections at a young age.
  • Overweight and obese patients are at a greater risk of asthma.
  • Symptoms can include cough, wheeze, shortness of breath, and chest tightness.
  • Medications can help manage asthma allowing patients to enjoy an active life.
  • Weather conditions such as extremely dry, wet, or windy weather can worsen an asthma condition.
  • If not managed adequately, asthma can lead to death

Allergy Facts

  • People can suffer from different types of allergies; food allergies, eczema, and hay fever (rhinitis) are just a few examples.
  • Symptoms from allergic rhinitis, commonly known as hay fever, include sneezing, stuffy or runny nose, itching of the nose, and watery eyes. This can be seasonal or perennial (year-round).
  • Allergies are often hereditary.
  • Allergies can appear at any age, and they can also disappear for some time and return.
  • Although most cases of allergies present mild symptoms, sometimes an allergy can be life-threatening, causing an extreme immune reaction known as anaphylaxis which puts the person into shock and can significantly impair their breathing.  This type of allergic reaction requires immediate medical attention even if the patient receives epinephrine and feels better.
  • Knowing which allergy triggers to avoid is crucial.

Common Allergy and Asthma Triggers to Avoid

  • Tobacco smoke: if you suffer from allergies or asthma, you should avoid smoking and secondhand smoke
  • Outdoor air pollution: pollution originating from factories, cars, and burning wood can trigger respiratory allergies and asthma attacks. Try to avoid places with high pollution levels or plan your activities when air pollution levels are lower.
  • Dust mites: These microscopic bugs that live in beds and couches are big triggers. Try to use allergen-proof mattress and pillowcase covers, wash your bedding weekly, and vacuum carpets, rugs, sofas, regularly
  • Allergens in pet fur: unfortunately, many people are allergic to the allergens of their furry pets. If you know you are allergic, try finding an allergy-friendly breed, bathe and groom them regularly, and use an air cleaner with a HEPA filter.
  • Mold: check your house for mold, which is common in damp areas. Eliminate it to help control your attacks.
  • Disinfectants and cleaning products: avoid overuse of cleaning products. Choose products with a mild scent, and if possible, avoid aerosol presentations. Do not mix disinfectant products. Choose products that are less likely to trigger your allergies or asthma, such as products with hydrogen peroxide (no more than 3%) or ethanol (ethyl alcohol). Avoid using bleach.
  • Dust: avoid disturbing dust but keep surfaces at your home and work as free from it as possible.
  • Food allergies:  make sure to inform the people who handle your food about any food allergies you have.

When to Go to the ER

A severe allergy or an asthma crisis requires immediate medical attention. Go to the nearest Altus Emergency Center immediately if you or someone you know experiences:

  • Shortness of breath or difficulty speaking
  • Very rapid breathing, coughing, or wheezing
  • Chest pain
  • Bluish color in the face, lips, or nails
  • Fainting
  • Vomiting
  • Swelling of the mouth, tongue, or throat.

Altus Emergency Centers are open 24/7 in their four locations: Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, Waxahachie. Severe allergic reactions and asthma attacks are time-sensitive emergencies; our minimal wait times and highly qualified medical professionals can help save lives.

severe spring allergy symptoms

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, 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!

Control Asthma & Live a Better Life!

Bring Asthma Under Control

We are in peak season for asthma sufferers, so we thought this was the perfect time to educate and raise awareness of this chronic and potentially life-threatening illness which affects over 1.5 million Texans according to the CDC.

The sad reality is there is no cure for asthma, but, not everything is bad news, people can lead normal happy lives and many deaths are preventable with proper treatment and care. Read on for tips on how to control asthma and improve your quality of life.

How to Control Asthma

What is Asthma? 

Asthma is a chronic lung disease that causes episodes of wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness, and nighttime or early morning coughing. Asthma is a chronic illness, it means you always have it, however, there are asthma attack triggers, that can cause the symptoms to worsen.  Getting to know the triggers is the first step to control asthma whether it’s for you or a loved one.

 

What Causes an Asthma Attack?

The exact cause of the illness has not been discovered yet, but, it is known that the airways of people who have asthma are very sensitive and tend to overreact to substances you are allergic to or find irritating.

When this happens, the airways get swollen and narrower making it hard to breathe, when the symptoms become worse than usual, this is known as an asthma attack. In severe cases, the airways can close so much that vital organs don’t get enough oxygen, and this is when the disease can be life-threatening.

The good thing is you can control your asthma by knowing the warning signs of an asthma attack, staying away from known triggers, and following your doctor’s advice.

How to Control Asthma

Common Asthma Triggers

People react to different allergens, but in general, these are the most common asthma triggers:

  • – Air Pollution: Air quality has a significant impact on the quality of life of people with asthma, industrial and automobile emissions are known triggers.
  • – Mold: Inhaling or breathing in mold can cause an asthma attack, and certain types of mold can cause other respiratory problems.
  • – Tobacco Smoke: Being around people who smoke can cause an asthma attack from breathing second-hand smoke.
  • – Cockroach Allergen: We know, gross! But it has been proven that cockroaches and their droppings are responsible for asthma attacks in many instances.
  • – Dust Mites: Dust mites are present in almost every home, but they don’t present a danger to all, however, if you or a loved one suffers from asthma you should know that dust mites can trigger an attack.
How to Control Asthma

Ways to Control Asthma

We don’t lose hope that someday scientists will find a cure for asthma, but until then the best way to improve your quality of life is by keeping it under control.

 

#1 Learn which Medicines Work Best

This is a trial and error method that you and your doctor need to work together on, there are different types of asthma medications and for some patients, one medication will be enough to control their symptoms, others might need a combination of medications.

 

#2 Take Your Asthma Controller Medicines as Prescribed

Controller medicines are those designed to make your airways less sensitive to asthma triggers, they help prevent asthma attacks or make them less severe when they do occur. The one drawback of these medications is that it may take 2-3 weeks for them to start working, so you need to take them every day even if you are feeling fine.

 

#3 Always Have a Rescue Inhaler with You

Having these small, easy to use portable devices are designed to help you breathe better quickly. For this reason, you should always carry one with you in case you experience an asthma episode.

How to Control Asthma

#4 Learn to Recognize Your Early Warning Signs

If there is one good thing about this illness, its that it gives you clues as to when you are about to get an attack, these symptoms include:

  • – A Headache
  • – Itchy Throat
  • – Itchy Eyes
  • – A Runny Nose
  • – Chest Tightness
  • – Anxiety

#5 Know Your Triggers

Preventing your triggers is vital to control asthma.  Speak to your doctor to help you recognize your asthma triggers, once you know what can cause an asthma attack, you can work towards staying clear of these.

 

#6 Create an Asthma Action Plan

You should never ignore your asthma symptoms; many deaths are caused by patients who think their symptoms are not severe enough to go to the ER for treatment.

Our last recommendation to control asthma is to create an asthma action plan with your doctor.  This plan should help you determine when to use your rescue inhaler, when to call your doctor and when to come in to visit one of our Altus Emergency centers for treatment.

How to Control Asthma

#7 Know Where to Go In the Event of an Emergency

Even if you do everything to control your asthma symptoms, a severe attack can still happen at any time, for this reason, all of Altus Emergency Centers are open 24/7 and our staff is available to treat your symptoms and get you breathing normally again.

If you are ever in need of emergency care, you will not have to wait in line at Altus Emergency Centers.  All of our ERs are fully equipped and open 24/7.

Altus Emergency Centers Texas is Here for You 24/7

altus emergency 24 hr ER Texas

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, Lufkin, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, 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.

High Blood Pressure Education Month – It Starts with Your Heart

Understanding High Blood Pressure

It Starts with Your Heart

May has been designated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as National High Blood Pressure Education Month.

Because of this, at Altus Emergency Centers we will focus our attention during this month on the education and prevention of high blood pressure in the communities we serve.

What is Blood Pressure?

Every time your heart beats it pumps blood through your arteries so it can transport oxygen and nutrients to the rest of your body.

As the blood moves, it pushes against the sides of the blood vessels. The strength of this pushing is your blood pressure.

Your blood pressure will rise and fall throughout the day, but if it stays high for a long time, it can damage your heart. High blood pressure also known as hypertension can cause heart attack, stroke and lead to other severe health problems.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Understanding Your Blood Pressure Reading

When a doctor or nurse takes your blood pressure, the reading consists of two numbers, which represent your systolic and diastolic blood pressures.

Systolic Blood Pressure: This is the highest level your blood pressure reaches when your heart beats.

Diastolic Blood Pressure: This is the lowest level your blood pressure reaches as your heart relaxes between beats.

Source American Heart Association

Alarming Facts of High Blood Pressure in America

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

  • 75 million American adults have high blood pressure that is 1 in 3 Americans
  • 1 in 3 adults has a condition known as prehypertension (higher than normal blood pressure but not yet in the high blood pressure range)
  • Only about 54% of hypertensive patients have their condition under control
  • High blood pressure is the primary or contributing cause of death for approximately 410,000 American’s a year, that is close to 1100 deaths a day
  • Between 30 and 32% of Texans ages 20 and older have high blood pressure

4 Things You May Not Know About High Blood Pressure

Here are some surprising facts about high blood pressure you may not have heard of:

1. There is a Link Between Hypertension and Dementia

Recent studies show a link between high blood pressure and an increased risk of dementia. The studies showed that having uncontrolled hypertension during midlife (45-65 years old) increased the risk of developing dementia later in life.

2. It’s Not an Old Folks Condition

High blood pressure can affect anyone regardless of age, gender and ethnicity. Statistics show that 1 in 4 men and nearly 1 in 5 women age 35-44 have high blood pressure.

 

3. Hypertension Usually Has No Symptoms

The condition is popularly known as the “silent killer” because it doesn’t always show symptoms like headaches or sweating.

The only sure way to know if you have high blood pressure or not is to have it checked regularly.

 

4. Many People with High Blood Pressure Don’t Know They Have It

The CDC estimates that as many as 11 million American’s suffer from high blood pressure and don’t know it, and as a result, are not being treated.

Tips to Prevent High Blood Pressure

At Altus Emergency Centers we believe preventing illnesses and accidents is the best policy. To reduce your risk of developing high blood pressure you should:

  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Exercise Regularly
  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet
  • Reduce sodium (salt) in your diet
  • Limit the amount of alcohol you drink
  • Quit smoking
  • Cut back on caffeine
  • Reduce your stress
  • Monitor your blood pressure regularly
  • Speak to your doctor if you notice your blood pressure is higher than normal

What to Do During a Hypertensive Crisis

A hypertensive crisis or high blood pressure crisis happens when your blood pressure rises quickly and severely with readings of 180/120 or over.

If your blood pressure reaches 180/120 or over and you experience symptoms such as chest pain, shortness of breath, back pain, numbness or weakness, changes in vision, or difficulties speaking, you are experiencing a hypertensive emergency and need to get to the nearest Altus ER Center for immediate medical attention.

 

At Altus Emergency Centers we have the best emergency doctors and registered nurses 24/7, they are trained to work under pressure and save lives. While we advocate for prevention, we are ready to treat hypertensive crisis and other high blood pressure-related medical emergencies.

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, 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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