Bronchitis is a condition that causes inflammation of the bronchial tubes that carry air to the lungs. It causes persistent coughing and difficulty in breathing. It can also result to wheezing and pain in the chest. This condition is also called chest cold because it happens after experiencing symptoms of common cold.
Symptoms of bronchitis
- Persistent coughing
- Sore throat
- Body aches
- Stuffy or runny nose
- Vomiting and diarrhea
- Mild Fever
- A whistling sound when breathing or wheezing
- Tightness of the chest or pain
- Coughing or smoker’s cough
Causes and risk factors
- Caused by virus called rhinovirus, adenovirus and parainfluenza
- Elderly people with weak immune system
- Infants and young children are susceptible to this condition
- Direct contact with dust, chemical fumes and vapors from certain jobs
- Allergic reactions or intolerance for food
- Take plenty of rest. Avoid performing activities such as running, biking, swimming and other exercises that cause heavy breathing.
- Apply hot compress on the affected area to lessen the pressure caused by coughing. Hot compress can be in the form of hot water bottle filled with water and laid on the chest. Another alternative is using a heating pad. Wrap it using a towel before placing to the affected area to prevent overheating of the skin and worsen the condition. Take a warm bath or shower is also good for the condition.
- Take the prescribed over-the-counter pain medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen
- Using the prescribed bronchodilators to widen the passages of air by relaxing the bronchial smooth muscles. A bronchodilator is a substance that dilates the bronchioles and bronchi, lessen the resistance in the respiratory airway and increase the airflow to the lungs.
- Eat anti-inflammatory foods to strengthen the immune system and lessen internal swelling. Consume bone broth; it gives the needed essential vitamins and mineral for fast healing of the condition. Eat plenty of raw fruits and vegetable to lessen the production of mucus. Another alternative is eating probiotic-rich foods such as kefir, sauerkraut, and kimchi and culture yogurt. These foods boost the immune system and replenish healthy bacteria found in the gut. Avoid mucus-producing foods such as sugar, dairy and fried foods.
- Drink plenty of water at least 1 glass every 2 hours. It will thin out the mucus in the bronchial, lessen the cough and for easy breathing.
- Install humidifier inside the room, to hydrate the lungs with warm, moist air and relax the bronchial passageways. It prevents drying out of the lungs, becomes irritated and worsens the condition. Some alternatives in breathing humid air is boiling water in the stove. The steam produced by the boiling water, add humidity to the room. Take a hot shower bath. Close the door of the bathroom and breathe in the steam inside the bathroom.
- Avoid areas with excessive pollution such as streets with heavy traffic, places with strong smell of chemicals.
- Quit smoking.