Bronchitis is a medical condition that affects a substantial percentage of the U.S. population. Acute bronchitis is quite common but with a definition that is still unclear. It’s normally referred to as a bronchi infection and is caused by viral infections. Although the disease is not life threatening or chronic, it still needs to be treated in ample time. Seek medical advice as soon as you see the symptoms.
The material posted on this page on acute bronchitis and respiratory emergencies is for learning purposes only. To learn to recognize and manage severe breathing emergencies register for a first aid class with a credible provider near you.
What Are the Symptoms of Acute Bronchitis
There are several symptoms that one needs to watch out for when dealing with this condition. They are:
- Chest pains
- Difficulty in breathing
- Persistent coughs
The severity of the symptoms will largely depend on the seriousness of the condition and its stage. The ailment normally takes a period of 3 days for symptoms to start showing. When treatment is administered, recuperation will take approx 3 weeks. All symptoms will have disappeared during this time duration.
What Are the Ways of Treating Acute Bronchitis?
The treatment administered will chiefly serve the purpose of boosting the immune system. This way, the body will be able to fight off the infection thus alleviating the symptoms. Some of the effective treatment options include:
Prescription Medication– There are numerous prescription medications readily available over-the-counter for treating this ailment. They mainly include aspirin, ibuprofen and paracetamol. The ingredients contained in the medicines help in alleviating aches and pains. Do not give aspirin to children less than 16 years old. It may cause more harm than good to the situation.
Hydrating– It’s advisable to drink plenty of water and fruit juices when suffering from acute bronchitis. Bear in mind that fever normally dehydrates the body. In order to prevent the effects of dehydration from kicking in, increase intake of fluids.
Avoiding Smoking– Smokers are at a much higher risk of contracting the ailment than non-smokers. Stay away from cigarettes when affected by this ailment. You can also opt to quit the habit altogether. Avoid secondhand smoke as well.
Do Cough Medications Treat Bronchitis?
The use of cough medication in treating bronchitis is wide spread. This remedy is popular mainly due to the fact that the major symptom of this condition is coughing. There is still insufficient evidence to prove that cough medications actually cure acute bronchitis. Bear in mind that using cough medication may worsen the situation. This is because they contain active ingredients that cause side effects such as drowsiness.
Antibiotic medication is also off limits. This is particularly relevant if the victim is suffering from other chronic illnesses. Viruses cannot be killed by antibiotics. These types of medications may alleviate the symptoms but to a very insignificant level. In other cases, they may even hinder recovery process while causing side effects like rashes, nausea and diarrhea.
In general, ensure that you only use prescribed medication when suffering from this condition. In addition to this, take dosages as instructed to enjoy speedy recovery from acute bronchitis.