Bronchitis Treatment in Alexandria VA, and Ruther Glen VA
Bronchitis is a condition that fits in between the common cold and pneumonia in its severity. Symptoms are most often cough with mucus, fever, fatigue, and a wheezing sound when you breathe. If you think you may have bronchitis, Premier Acute Care Services is here to help. We provide a walk-in clinic so there is no need to make an appointment. We also have lab equipment on site that allows us to make a speedy and accurate diagnosis. For more information, contact us today or schedule an appointment online. We have convenient locations to serve you in Alexandria VA, and Ruther glen VA.
Table of Contents:
What is bronchitis?
What are the symptoms of bronchitis?
What factors increase your risk of getting bronchitis?
What can I do to reduce my risk of getting bronchitis?
When should I call my doctor?
Bronchitis is inflammation of your bronchial tube linings. Bronchial tubes carry air to your lungs and back out. People with bronchitis often have thick mucus that is discolored when they cough. This condition can be acute or chronic.
Bronchitis will usually develop from a cold or respiratory infection and the acute form can be common. Chronic bronchitis is more serious causing constant irritation or inflammation and is often related to smoking.
The acute form is often called a chest cold and normally gets better in a week to 10 days. The cough may remain for weeks after the rest of the symptoms have faded.
Chronic bronchitis is included in the list of conditions that are considered chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD.
If you have acute or chronic bronchitis the symptoms include:
• Mucus can be clear, white, green, or yellowish-grey. Rarely will there be blood.
• Slight fever and chills
• Shortness of breath
• Chest discomfort
Acute bronchitis can be associated with cold symptoms like mild headache or body aches. These symptoms will normally get better in a week, but a cough may remain for a few weeks.
Chronic bronchitis will have a productive cough that will last at least three months. It can have recurring bouts for at least two years. Chronic bronchitis will have periods when the cough or symptoms get worse due to another infection occurring simultaneously.
Acute bronchitis is normally caused by the same viruses that cause colds and flu. Antibiotics do not work on viruses and will not help with bronchitis. Smoking is one of the greatest factors in chronic bronchitis. Toxic gasses, dust, and air pollution can also be contributing factors.
Factors that can increase your risk of developing bronchitis include:
• Low resistance to the viruses that cause bronchitis can result from having a cold or chronic condition that weakens your immune system. Infants, young children, and older people are more vulnerable to infection.
• People who smoke and people who live with smokers are at a greater risk of developing acute or chronic bronchitis.
• Exposure to certain lung irritants at work or in other environments increases your vulnerability to developing bronchitis.
• Gastric reflux is a contributing factor. Severe heartburn irritates your throat and makes you more vulnerable to developing bronchitis.
If you want to reduce your risk of getting bronchitis you can do the following:
• Many times, bronchitis is a result of getting the flu. Get the annual flu vaccine. You may also want to get a vaccination to protect against certain forms of pneumonia.
• Avoid cigarette smoke and this is a major contributing factor in developing bronchitis.
• Wash your hands and use alcohol-based hand sanitizers frequently. If you work in an environment that leaves you exposed to dust, fumes, or gasses that irritate the lungs, wear a mask. This is even more important if you are dealing with COPD.
You ought to see your doctor if your cough:
• Persists for more than three weeks
• Interferes with your sleep
• Is accompanied by a fever above 100.4F
• Produces discolored mucus
• Produces blood
• If you have shortness of breath or wheezing with your cough
If you have repeated cases of bronchitis, you may have chronic bronchitis which will require medical attention. For more information, call us today or schedule an appointment online. We have convenient locations to serve you in Alexandria VA, and Ruther glen VA. We serve patients from Alexandria VA, Ruther Glen VA, Bagdad VA, Athens VA, Balty VA, and Doswell VA.
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