A Look into Two Common Respiratory Conditions

Throughout my life, I’ve come across countless people suffering from respiratory conditions. These are hard to hide since symptoms include coughing, runny nose and wheezing. Most of these conditions are triggered by different factors which can be as simple as exposure to smoke or dust or, due to an infection. Cold and flu are the most common respiratory conditions which affect most of us. However, there are more serious conditions such as bronchitis vs pneumonia. These are usually persistent conditions which need proper medical attention to treat. I’ll take a look at both conditions.

Bronchitis

This condition of the respiratory condition affects the airways. It’s the inflammation of the bronchi. Many people will experience the condition after a bout of another less severe respiratory condition such as flu. During this time, the immune system has been compromised providing the perfect opportunity for infection.

Inflammation of the bronchi occurs such that their internal lining swells limiting flow of air to and from the lungs. The inflammation also results in the formation of mucus as a byproduct of the body’s immune system trying to battle the infection.

The inflammation of the bronchi is believed to be cause by bacteria or viruses. It can be further aggravated if the person inhales irritants such as dust, cigarette smoke and certain chemicals. Its symptoms can also be more apparent when the person is exposed to a sudden temperature change such as mornings.

Some of the symptoms tied to the condition include a cough that’s accompanied by mucus. In the case of acute bronchitis, the cough might be present for a couple of weeks. In the case of chronic bronchitis, the symptoms might be present for months and it might require medical intervention to solve. Other symptoms of the condition include shortness of breath, wheezing, fatigue and, fever.

There are a number of bronchitis home remedies some of which are readily available. Some of the home remedies include ginger, garlic, hydration and warm salt water. In severe cases, the doctor might prescribe antibiotics and antivirals to kill the causing agents.

Pneumonia

This is a more severe condition that affects the respiratory system. It is an infection of the lung tissue and can result from bronchitis going untreated. Infected lung tissue becomes filled with fluid and cannot function properly.

This condition has several causing factors and they include bacteria, viruses, exposure to toxins and airborne chemicals. This is the reason why pneumonia is often categorized according to the agent that causes it.

Like bronchitis, the main symptom of pneumonia is a cough that’s accompanied by mucus that can be blood stained. Other symptoms include shortness of breath, chest pain, wheezing and, muscle pain. Persons with severe pneumonia are usually oxygen deprived and patients might experience change in skin color.

Pneumonia is considered an emergency health condition which requires medical attention. Infection of the lung tissue will lead to gradual breakdown of the lung cells. This hinders the lungs from working effectively. Seeking medical attention where the appropriate medications will be prescribed is recommended.