If you or a loved one has asthma, it’s beneficial to have one or more specialists to make up your asthma treatment team to ensure that you are able to keep your symptoms under control.
There is nothing more frightening than the onset of a sudden asthma attack, as anyone who has asthma knows. The best precaution is to keep symptoms under control and the best way to do this is to assemble a team of experts.
Your primary care physician or family physician will be able to help you put together a team of specialists tailored to your specific needs.
You’re always in good hands when you go to your Urgent Care Clinic, but there are many health care professionals on deck who can make up your own personal crew!
Your Primary Care Physician is your first line of defense. You know him or her as well as they know you. You see them every time you’re sick and perhaps they are the first ones who diagnosed your asthma. If it’s mild enough, maybe they can continue to treat it. More severe or complicated cases will need to see specialists and this will be coordinated by your Primary Care or Family Physician.
The Nurse Practioner may work alongside your Family Physician. He or she will be highly trained in their field and can perform a physical, take your medical history and inform you of the resources available as well as teaching you the best ways to manage your asthma.
Pediatricians are doctors who specialize in children’s health care. They can diagnose your child’s asthma and treat it. If they feel that your child needs a specialist, they will help you choose the specialist or specialists you need to keep their asthma under control.
Allergists or Immunologists specialize in allergies. They will perform allergy tests on you to determine what you are allergic to as allergies exacerbate asthma in many people.
Pulmonologists are doctors who specialize in lung diseases. Asthma is a lung disease and if your asthma is particularly severe or complicated, your primary care physician may want you to have a pulmonologist on your asthma team.
Pulmonary Rehabilitation Therapists are doctors who specialize in particularly severe cases of asthma. If you find that you have difficulty performing even the simplest of activities such as mild exercise, normal daily activity or even just getting a good night’s sleep your Pulmonary Rehabilitation Therapist will help you control your symptoms. You will learn what exercises you can do and how to breathe properly.
Otolaryngologists are ear, nose and throat doctors. They are also referred to as ENT’s. If you have any abnormalities in your sinuses or airways that are causing your asthma to worsen, they will help with this.
Your local Pharmacist is there to provide not only your medications but also to answer any questions you may have about your medications, side effects, drug interactions and give you updates on the latest medications.
If your asthma is more on the mild side, your Primary Care Physician may be all that you need to stay healthy. The more severe your symptoms are, the more specialists will need to be on your Asthma Team.