Have you ever experienced a persistent cough that just seems to linger longer than a common cold?
If so, you might have had a bout of bronchitis.
Let’s dive deeper into what bronchitis is and how it can be managed?
What is Bronchitis?
It’s an infection in the tubes, called bronchi, that carry air into your lungs become irritated and inflamed.
This irritation causes the bronchi to swell and produce excess mucus, which makes you cough a lot, sometimes for a few weeks. This condition is mostly caused by viruses, but things like smoke can also lead to it.
What are the Types of Bronchitis?
There are two types of Bronchitis:
Acute bronchitis is a short-term illness that usually comes from a virus. It makes you cough, but generally gets better on its own in a few weeks. Usually, you won’t need any special treatment for it.
Chronic Bronchitis is a long-term problem. If you find yourself coughing and producing mucus for many days in a month, for three months in a year, and this continues for at least two years, it could be chronic bronchitis.
If you have chronic bronchitis, it could be a sign of a more serious condition called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
You should talk to your doctor about getting tested for COPD if you’re showing signs.
What are the Symptoms?
How Does Bronchitis Affect My Body?
It impacts your body by causing inflammation and irritation in your bronchial tubes.
You may start feeling:
How Do You Trap By Bronchitis?
It is often caused by a viral infection, similar to those that cause the common cold or the flu.
These viruses can be spread through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes, or by touching surfaces contaminated by these viruses and then touching your face, particularly your mouth, nose, or eyes.
The other causes include:
- Viruses: These include the flu, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), adenovirus, common cold (rhinovirus), and coronavirus.
- Bacteria: Some bacteria like Bordetella pertussis, Mycoplasma pneumonia, and Chlamydia pneumonia can also cause bronchitis.
- Pollution: Dirty air can irritate your airways and lead to bronchitis.
- Smoking: Whether it’s tobacco or marijuana, smoking can cause bronchitis.
Is Bronchitis Contagious?
Bronchitis, which is the swelling of your airways, can’t be passed from person to person.
However, the viruses and bacteria that lead to bronchitis can spread.
For example, if you have the flu and it causes bronchitis, you can give the flu to a friend. But it doesn’t mean your friend will also get bronchitis; their airways might not react the same way as yours did.
Is It A Side Effect Of Covid-19?
Bronchitis can be caused by many types of viruses, including SARS-CoV2, which is the virus that causes COVID-19.
The signs of bronchitis can look a lot like COVID-19, so it’s important to get tested to find out which one you’re dealing with.
However, as of now, there’s no research to suggest that COVID-19 causes bronchitis more often than other viral infections.
Who Are At Higher Risk?
How Is Bronchitis Treated?
How Can I Lower My Risk Of Bronchitis?
Bronchitis, while uncomfortable, is a treatable condition.
Understanding its causes and symptoms is key to getting timely treatment and preventing its progression into a chronic condition.
Always consult with a healthcare professional if you think you may have bronchitis or are experiencing prolonged coughing or respiratory discomfort.
Remember, your lungs are essential for your overall health and wellbeing.
Take good care of your lungs, and they’ll take good care of you!