How to Treat Bronchitis?
No one likes to be sick, period. However we are all not exempt from facing a virus or simply a flu. Upper respiratory infections are very common in a doctor’s office, patients coming to get answers on how to treat bronchitis, asthma or the allergies and coughing normally seen on this condition.
For many doctors, bronchitis is easily recognized and treated. The mucus found in the lungs becomes inflamed, obstructing the bronchial passages causing this respiratory disease. The coughing comes from having little to no space for the air to flow through the bronchial passages which is why breathlessness and phlegm are often shed while coughing.
Bronchitis is seen in two forms: acute and chronic. Also people affected by asthma could present asthmatic bronchitis in which aside of presenting an inflammation of the mucus membrane the lining of the bronchial tubes becomes swelled as well. The acute bronchitis can last from one to four weeks while the chronic type lasts at least 3 months in a year.
Among the symptoms for acute and chronic bronchitis you will see the following:
- Feeling shortness of breath or wheezing.
- Coughing that persists for long periods of time that often includes yellow, white or greenish phlegm.
- Soreness in the chest area when coughing.
- Fever is not commonly present, but if it were (higher than 100.4⁰ F.), accompanied with general achiness then your symptoms of bronchitis might have turned into pneumonia (lung infection).
When visiting your doctor to treat this condition, a simple description of the symptoms usually lets him or her know it is in fact bronchitis, however to confirm this version, your doctor will do a physical examination to make a diagnosis and provide the corresponding treatment. From a simple listen to your lungs with a stethoscope to a chest X-ray for a more accurate analysis can be expected from your doctor’s appointment. Other tests include measuring your level of oxygen in your blood with a respiratory pulse oximeter and maybe even a blood sample.
Like treating a flu, plenty of rest, lots of fluids will be the doctor’s orders. This including avoiding fumes and smoke. Your doctor might even prescribe an inhaled bronchodilator and cough syrup. Along with this and depending of the severity of the disease oral steroids will be recommended to reduce the swelling. You might also want to consider getting a humidifier or an air purifier to avoid any possibilities of chronic bronchitis, and if you are a smoker, consider quitting this habit, it’s bad for you anyways. See your doctor as soon as you see these symptoms to get a personalized treatment on how to treat bronchitis.