Bronchitis: Symptoms, Causes and Precautions
A common respiratory disease, bronchitis is inflammation of the lining of bronchial tubes that carry air to and from the lungs. As this membrane becomes thicker, the tiny airways in the lungs become narrow, resulting in cough, phlegm and breathlessness. Bronchitis can either be acute or chronic. Acute Bronchitis usually improves within a few days, whereas Chronic Bronchitis, which is a serious condition that’s included as one of the conditions in Chronic Pulmonary Obstructive Disease (COPD), can last for several days or even reoccur.
- Cough with yellow, white, or green phlegm
- Production of mucus (sputum), which can become bloody over time
- Discomfort below breastbone during deep breathing
- Slight fever and chills
- Discomfort in chest
Repeated attacks of acute bronchitis can deteriorate the bronchial airways over time and eventually cause chronic bronchitis.
The main causes of this disease are
Industrial pollution - Working in industries like coal mining where workers are exposed to dust and fumes accelerate chronic bronchitis.
Smoking - Smoking cigarettes irritates the bronchial tubes.
- Take plenty of rest
- Drink lots of fluids
- Avoid smoking.
Poeple who suffer from chronic bronchitis, are at risk of developing other lung diseases and infections as well as heart problems. Smoking causes too much damage in people suffering from acute bronchitis, making it much harder for them to recover. Cigarettes damage the tiny hair-like structures, called cilia that remove any debris, excess mucus or other irritants.
If you are suffering from acute bronchitis, or see any of the above mentioned symptoms, consult a doctor today.