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Join Atrium Health Navicent in Raising Awareness for Asthma and Allergies

May is a peak time for asthma and allergy symptoms

In observance of National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month, Atrium Health Navicent encourages the community to help raise awareness for the medical conditions and urges those with untreated symptoms to seek treatment.

Asthma and allergies affect more than 100 million people in the United States and May is a peak time for symptoms, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America.

Asthma, in particular, is a serious condition. If you’re having long-term issues with breathing or coughing, it’s important to see a doctor for an evaluation.

“Asthma is a serious medical condition that, if left untreated can cause worsening symptoms, chronic inflammation, scarring in the lungs – and in severe cases – can lead to death,” said Dr. Gorby Leon, medical director for Atrium Health Navicent Primary Care Fort Valley and a physician at Atrium Health Navicent Primary Care Family Medicine Byron and Atrium Health Navicent Peach. “With treatment, most patients can live active lives with few limitations.”

The most common symptoms of asthma include:

• Shortness of breath

• Wheezing, especially while lying flat in bed

• Coughing

• A sensation of tightness or pressure around the chest when taking a deep breath

• Allergy symptoms, including runny nose and throat drainage

When several of these symptoms happen at once, it can make an accurate diagnosis challenging.

The gold standard for asthma testing is a pulmonary function test. This painless assessment measures the patient’s lung volume to see if the airway is sensitive to the medication used to treat asthma. If the patient’s airway responds to the medication, it suggests that the patient has asthma.

Environmental triggers and allergies are known to make asthma symptoms worse.

Most asthma patients start by seeing their primary care doctor. If the patient still has trouble controlling their symptoms with an inhaler regimen, the doctor can request a referral to a specialist.

Atrium Health Navicent offers primary care for everyone, at every age. Offices are located close to home in Baldwin, Bibb, Monroe and Peach counties. To find a doctor, visit www.NavicentHealth.org and click “Find A Doctor.”

About Atrium Health Navicent

Atrium Health Navicent is the leading provider of health care in central and south Georgia and is committed to its mission of elevating health and wellbeing through compassionate care. Atrium Health Navicent is part of Advocate Health, which is headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, and is the fifth-largest nonprofit health system in the United States, created from the combination of Atrium Health and Advocate Aurora Health. Atrium Health Navicent provides high-quality, personalized care in 53 specialties at more than 50 facilities throughout the region. As part of the largest, integrated, nonprofit health system in the Southeast, it is also able to tap into some of the nation’s leading medical experts and specialists with Atrium Health, allowing it to provide the best care close to home – including advanced innovations in virtual medicine and care. Throughout its 125-year history in the community, Atrium Health Navicent has remained dedicated to enhancing health and wellness for individuals throughout the region through nationally recognized quality care, community health initiatives and collaborative partnerships. It is also one of the leading teaching hospitals in the region, helping to ensure viability for rural health care for the next generation. For more information, please visit www.NavicentHealth.org.