With climate change, it is common and common for us to encounter various respiratory diseases such as cold, flu, bronchitis, pneumonia, asthma, tonsillitis and allergies in general. The names seem quite common and familiar, but when asked what each one is about, few people really know.
What is bronchitis?
Bronchitis is the inflammation of the inner part of the bronchi, which are responsible for driving air into the lungs. This inflammation can be acute or chronic. Being the most common acute and caused by infectious agents such as viruses and bacteria.
Signs of Bronchitis
This illness can be accompanied by another viral infection like the flu , which can cause fever , malaise and shortness of breath. This is because the inflammation caused in the bronchial mucosa causes the passage of air to become narrow, making breathing difficult.
Chronic bronchitis, on the other hand, is caused by agents that irritate the mucosa such as cigarettes and pollution. Smokers or people who work with constant inhalation of dust, smoke and chemical agents are more likely to develop chronic bronchitis.
Asthmatic bronchitis, also known as allergic bronchitis, is also a chronic type of the disease. Genetic factors are involved in the causes of asthmatic bronchitis. So, although it is not transmissible through the air or anything, the condition can pass from parents to children and so on through the generations. In addition to genetics, the factors that cause allergy represent about 80% of people who suffer from this condition.
The most common allergenic agents are:
- Presence of dust mites on mattresses and pillows;
- Bedding, dust and dust;
- Animal hair;
- Strong perfumes and the smell of cleaning products.
A third possibility is the appearance of asthmatic bronchitis in people who suffer from reflux .
Is Bronchitis Contagious?
The acute form does, because it is an infection caused by viruses or bacteria . And it can be contracted directly through saliva, infected environments and through the air. The chronic form, however, as mentioned above, can be caused by several factors.
Who is most susceptible?
- Elderly, children and babies
- People with low immunity
- Who suffers from gastric reflux
- Who smokes
- Prolonged contact with irritating polluting agents
What are the symptoms of bronchitis?
Generally, symptoms of both acute and chronic bronchitis begin as a cold and gradually increase. The presence of constant and dry dough, which can turn into cough with secretion, if the cause of the infection is bacterial. Other symptoms such as: wheezing, difficulty breathing and chest discomfort.
How is bronchitis diagnosed?
Usually, only with auscultation (the stethoscope is used) of the lung and the x -ray is already possible to diagnose bronchitis, but if necessary, the doctor may also request:
- Oximetry (measure the oxygen level)
- Sputum examination (sputum examination)
- Lung function test (Spirometry)
How to treat Bronchitis?
The vast majority of cases of bronchitis resolve themselves , without the need for medication, and the symptoms disappear in about two weeks.
Other times, the doctor may prescribe specific medications such as:
- Cough syrups and to help expectorate
- Antibiotics, in case of bacterial infection, but the most common is caused by viruses.
- Medicines for other respiratory diseases such as asthma (if necessary)
Pregnant with Bronchitis, what to do?
The first step is to seek medical help, he who will assess your case and prescribe treatment according to your history and your condition. Remembering that during pregnancy it is not recommended to use any medication. Talk to your obstetrician.
My son has bronchitis and now?
The pediatrician is the doctor who will make the initial diagnosis, if you need another medical specialty, he will refer you to the pulmonologist. Acute bronchitis does not require drastic treatment, just rest and fluid intake to dissolve the mucus, in addition a syrup for cough relief can be prescribed.
Smaller babies are unable to cough properly to expel mucus, so inhalation is necessary, as well as cleaning the airways with saline. Sputum is done through the stool.
What is the difference between Bronchitis and Bronchiolitis?
Bronchitis affects children, adults and the elderly, whereas bronchiolitis is more common in babies from newborns to 3 years. Bronchiolitis affects the bronchioles, which are the smallest part of the lung, the smallest part of the airway. The symptoms are usually the same , it starts with a slight cold and it becomes difficult to breathe.
How to Prevent Bronchitis
The best way to prevent bronchitis is:
- Maintain hygiene habits by washing your hands frequently.
- Avoid crowded and closed places and reduce contact with air pollution and chemical agents that can cause irritation to the lungs;
- Do not smoke;
- Get the vaccines recommended for flu and pneumonia
Is bronchitis curable?
In most cases and conditions, bronchitis is curable. It is only in isolated cases of the elderly, those with chronic heart or lung disease and smokers that the disease can become chronic.
Use of Natural Remedies
Natural remedies alleviate the symptoms and there is no harm in using them. You can abuse fruits that contain vitamin C, hot teas for cough relief, honey (not recommended for children under 1 year). In addition, drinking plenty of fluids is essential to recover quickly.
See Also: Pneumonia in Children – How to Find Out?
My name is Dr. Alexis Hart I am 38 years old, I am the mother of 3 beautiful children! Different ages, different phases 16 years, 12 years and 7 years. In love with motherhood since always, I found it difficult to make my dreams come true, and also some more after I was already a mother.
Since I imagined myself as a mother, in my thoughts everything seemed to be much easier and simpler than it really was, I expected to get pregnant as soon as I wished, but it wasn’t that simple. The first pregnancy was smooth, but my daughter’s birth was very troubled. Joana was born in 2002 with a weight of 2930kg and 45cm, from a very peaceful cesarean delivery but she had already been born with congenital pneumonia due to a broken bag not treated with antibiotics even before delivery.