Bronchitis is a common respiratory disease caused by viruses that cause colds. The virus is contained in millions of tiny droplets that travel in the air. When these droplets land on surfaces, the virus is transferred to others. Once on a surface, the virus can live for up to 24 hours. This makes it easy for people to transmit the disease. People can also catch bronchitis by breathing in irritant substances.
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Bronchitis is an inflammation of the bronchial tubes, which transport air to and from the lungs. It usually starts with a respiratory infection, coughing up thick, discolored mucus. It can be acute or chronic. Acute bronchitis usually resolves on its own within a week to ten days, while chronic bronchitis often develops from smoking or another cause.
The causes of bronchitis vary but are generally related to a person’s lifestyle. For example, smokers are at a higher risk than anyone who is allergic to dust, mold, and other allergens. Also, individuals with a family history of lung diseases or gastroesophageal reflux disease are more likely to develop bronchitis. To reduce your risk of bronchitis, avoid air pollution and get your flu shot yearly. If your symptoms persist or worsen, consult a doctor right away.
Acute bronchitis often clears up, but some people experience persistent symptoms for weeks. While most people feel better after a few weeks, a persistent cough may indicate more severe disease. If you are concerned about your health, you can call the Lung Association’s Lung Helpline to speak with a respiratory professional.
Diagnosis of bronchitis involves a physical examination, a stethoscope examination, and a pulmonary function test to determine the level of airflow in the lungs. Although viral bronchitis usually clears up, it’s essential to see a doctor for further diagnosis. The doctor may prescribe antibiotics or order further tests to determine whether another condition may be at play. Patients with chronic asthma may also benefit from corticosteroid inhalers or other medications, which can help the lungs clear mucus and improve airflow.
The diagnosis of bronchitis can be challenging to make early on when symptoms are similar to common colds. However, a physician will perform a physical exam and listen to the lungs to assess whether the symptoms are caused by a bacterial infection or an allergic reaction. In addition, they will take a sputum sample to check for bacteria. If the doctor suspects a bacterial infection, other diagnostic tests will be performed, such as chest X-rays and blood tests.
Bronchitis can be either acute or chronic. In acute cases, the inflammation of the bronchial tubes interferes with the airflow, resulting in cough or thick mucus. Chronic bronchitis is a more severe condition and can last for months. If left untreated, it can progress to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
The diagnosis of bronchitis is determined by your doctor, who will perform a physical exam and ask about your health history. The doctor may also order blood tests to check for bacterial infection and perform a chest X-ray. If your doctor suspects that you may have pneumonia, they may prescribe an antibiotic. Otherwise, an over-the-counter medicine that thins mucus may help. A nasal swab is also used to rule out other diseases.
A virus usually causes bronchitis, but a bacterial infection complicates it. Antibiotics are not effective against viral bronchitis, but they may be helpful for bacterial bronchitis. People who smoke and are exposed to air pollution are at a higher risk of developing bronchitis. People with weakened immune systems are also more likely to develop the condition.
Bronchitis can be acute or chronic, and the symptoms can worsen over time. The condition is typically accompanied by fever and a persistent cough. Many people experience flare-ups during the winter months. Fortunately, many people can get better on their own.
The most common symptom of bronchitis is a cough that lasts more than a week. In severe cases, you may experience fever and difficulty breathing. While bronchitis symptoms typically clear up on their own, it is essential to seek medical attention if the symptoms persist.
Bronchitis is an inflammatory disorder of the bronchial tubes. It can be acute or chronic and is caused by a bacterial or viral infection. If it’s bacterial, treatment will involve antibiotics, but if it’s viral, you can try home remedies to relieve the symptoms.
When bronchitis strikes, it’s important to get rest. Exercise is essential for recovery, but you’ll want to take it easy during the first few days. Fever and muscle and joint pain can make it challenging to exercise. However, once your symptoms subside, you can gradually work back to exercise. Also, you should drink plenty of fluids to help break up the mucus.
Honey has a soothing effect on sore throats and the cough associated with bronchitis. However, honey should not be given to infants younger than one-year-old since it can cause infant botulism, a form of food poisoning.