Bronchitis (Acute)

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What is it

Many people suffer an attack of acute bronchitis as part of a severe cold.Bronchitis happens when an infection causes swelling or inflammation of the liner of the bronchial tubes. These tubes, the bronchi, are the major air passages that lead from the trachea (the windpipe) into the lungs. The bronchi are lined with cilia, or tiny hairs, that sweep foreign matter out of the respiratory tract. When the bronchi are inflamed, the cilia don’t function properly, and coughing the chief symptom of bronchitis becomes the body’s way of coping with the irritants and mucus that build up and threaten to clog the bronchi.

About 5 percent of Americans suffer from chronic bronchitis, which is characterized by a deep mucus-producing cough that over time becomes constant and lasts for months. Most people who get chronic bronchitis are smokers.


  • Stubborn coughing that are firstly dry and hacking, but usually converts productive, bringing up mucus that is yellow, green or gray
  • Shortness of breath and wheezing.
  • Fever (occasionally), usually below 101°F.
  • Chest pain and discomfort behind the breast-bone.

What causes it

Most cases of acute bronchitis are caused by viruses, including some of the viruses that cause common cold sometimes, however, bacteria cause the disorder. Chemical fumes, smoke, dust may also worsen bronchitis. Additionally, cold weather, asthma, smoking and congestive heart failure may increase the chance of an attack.

What if you do nothing

Bouts of severe bronchitis are common but not a chief health threat. Symptoms normally clear within a week, but if you are a cigarette smoker or have a prolonged lung disease like emphysema or asthma, you have to take care of the bronchitis to avoid probable difficulties.

Home remedies

Relieve the discomfort

Take non-prescription  ibuprofen, NSAIDs aspirin or naproxen or acetaminophen to decrease fever and pain.

Don’t stop a wet cough

If you have a wet productive cough (coughing up phlegm), do not overpower it with non-prescription cough suppressants until the cough keeps you from sleeping. It’s not suggested to stop a cough completely because mucus may be stuck within the bronchial tubes, resulting to breathing problems or causing pneumonia.

Suppress a dry cough

If you have a stubborn dry cough that hampers with sleep and everyday activities, take an over-the-counter cough suppressant that contains dextromethorphan, a medicine that reduces cough by acting straight on the brain’s cough center. Cough medications with a title that ends in “DM” consists of dextromethorphan.

Drink plenty of fluids

This will liquefy the mucus and loosen phlegm in the lungs, making them easier to expel when coughing. Drink nearly eight glasses of water or any other non-alcoholic liquids a day, till the urine is almost neutral.

Moisten the air

Take hot steamy showers or use a humidifier or vaporizer in your bed room to keep bronchial tubes humid. Though, home humidifiers can haven fungi and other potential allergens, so be sure to keep the system scrupulously clean and in good working order. Change the water daily, and replace filters as often as directed.


Don’t smoke. Avoid secondhand smoke as well.

Take it easy

If you are at danger for bronchitis, evade energetic outside work and out-door workout on poor air quality days.

Clear of all respiratory irritants

Avoid dust, paints, chemical vapors, smoke and other irritants. If these are unavoidable at your work place, be sure to use a mask or other protective gear.

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