Wheezing

Allergy, Asthma & Immunology of the Rockies, P.C.

Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology Specialists located in Glenwood Springs, CO & Avon, CO

The team at Allergy, Asthma & Immunology of the Rockies, P.C., takes wheezing seriously. That’s because wheezing may indicate something is causing a malfunction in the airways that move air in and out of your lungs. If you’ve heard your child wheezing or are experiencing the problem yourself, schedule a visit today with asthma, allergy, and immunology specialists in Avon, Basalt, Eagle, Aspen, Frisco, and Glenwood Springs, Colorado. Call or book your visit online.

Wheezing Q & A

What causes wheezing?

Wheezing is a sign that your airways are having difficulty moving air in and out of your lungs. It may be due to an obstruction, such as when a foreign object or piece of food blocks your windpipe. Most often, however, it occurs when your airways become inflamed and begin to narrow, making it difficult to inhale or exhale.

This inflammation can affect any airway from your throat to your lungs. It may, for instance, occur in your bronchial tubes, which are small tube-like structures in your lungs. Or, you may be experiencing an allergic reaction that’s causing swelling in your throat and restricting air movement.   

Wheezing may be related to several underlying conditions, which include:

  • Asthma
  • A temporary viral illness, such as a cold
  • Bronchitis, inflammation of the inner membrane of your bronchial tubes
  • A severe allergic reaction

Regardless of the underlying cause, wheezing accompanied by difficulty breathing and other signs of respiratory distress requires immediate medical attention.

What does wheezing sound like?

Wheezing is a high-pitched whistling sound that may be clearly audible or soft enough that it’s only detected with a stethoscope. It can occur with inhalation but is most often noted with exhalation.

How can I tell when wheezing is an emergency?

Mild wheezing that occurs with a cold or other viral illness, and clears with coughing, may not require medical treatment.

See a doctor if:

  • You develop wheezing that’s not accompanied by a related illness
  • Your wheezing is recurrent
  • You have trouble breathing or notice rapid breathing with no or only minimal physical activity

Your symptoms require emergency care if you develop:

  • Wheezing after being stung by an insect or eating a certain food
  • Wheezing accompanied by difficulty breathing
  • Wheezing along with significantly pale or bluish tinged skin

Once your provider identifies the underlying cause of your wheezing, many effective treatments exist to help control the condition and prevent future episodes, such as inhalers for asthma or immunotherapy for allergies.

The board-certified asthma, allergy, and immunology specialists at Allergy, Asthma & Immunology of the Rockies are well-acquainted with wheezing. For reliable answers regarding wheezing, schedule your visit today by calling or booking your appointment online.