Asthma and Bronchitis are common medical conditions seen in our clinic. While some cases are difficult to treat, we often see good results using simple treatment protocols and herbal therapies.
People with asthma experience symptoms when the airways tighten, inflame, or fill with mucus. Common asthma symptoms include:
- Coughing, especially at night
- Shortness of breath
- Chest tightness, pain, or pressure
Still, not every person with asthma has the same symptoms in the same way. You may not have all of these symptoms, or you may have different symptoms of asthma at different times. Your symptoms may also vary from one asthma attack to the next, being mild during one and severe during another.
Some people with asthma may go for extended periods without having any symptoms, interrupted by periodic worsening of their symptoms called asthma attacks. Others might have asthma symptoms every day. In addition, some people may only have asthma during exercise or asthma with viral infections like colds.
Mild asthma attacks are generally more common. Usually, the airways open up within a few minutes to a few hours. Severe attacks are less common but last longer and require immediate medical help. It is important to recognize and treat even mild symptoms to help you prevent severe episodes and keep asthma under better control.
Bronchitis is a respiratory disease in which the mucous membrane in the lungs’ bronchial passages becomes inflamed. As the irritated membrane swells and grows thicker, it narrows or shuts off the tiny airways in the lungs, resulting in coughing spells accompanied by thick phlegm and breathlessness. The disease comes in two forms: acute (lasting less than 6 weeks) and chronic (reoccurring frequently for more than two years). In addition, people with asthma experience an inflammation of the lining of the bronchial tubes called asthmatic bronchitis.
Acute bronchitis signs and symptoms:
- Hacking cough and
- Yellow, white or green phlegm usually occuring 24 – 48 hours after cough
- Fever, Chills
- Sore or tight chest
- Pain below breast bone
- shortness of breath
Chronic bronchitis is a serious long-term disorder that often requires regular medical treatment. Signs and symptoms include:
- Persistent productive cough for at least three months of the year for the last two years
- Wheezing and some breathlessness
Treating Asthma with Acupuncture therapy is relatively simple and is effective for both acute and chronic attacks. Short term, acupuncture may be able to shorten or end an acute attack and through extended therapy may reduce the frequency and severity of the condition. Points on the forearm that are associated with lung function and on the leg associated with reducing phlegm and improving the ability to take deeper breaths are often used.
Herbal therapy is used for acute cases in conjunction with acupuncture therapy and are best for long term care in cases of chronic conditions and immune support. Common formulas are Xiao Qing Long Tang, used when asthma which is worse when lying down; there are chills; clear phlegm; cough; difficult to expectorate phlegm; emphysema; fever; frothy phlegm; heaviness of the body; a lack of sweat; and profuse phlegm, or Qing Qi Hua Tan Wan is more for continuous cough with thick yellow phlegm. Of course these are common formulas and may not be suitable for your condition. It is always recommended you consult a licensed acupuncturist before beginning an herbal regimen.
Sustain Community Acupuncture offers wellness for all, naturally. Located in San Diego between the Hillcrest and North park Neighborhoods, Sustain Community Acupuncture offers affordable Acupuncture, Herbal Therapy and Medical Massage. For questions about this article or for a consultation please call 619.358.9508 or contact us here.