Acute bronchitis is usually diagnosed by the doctor, on the basis of your clinical symptoms and a physical examination. If you have acute bronchitis, the doctor can usually hear a rattling sound in the airways of your lungs, using a stethoscope. In the case of chronic bronchitis, the doctor will need to take a chest X-ray to understand the scope of your lung damage and to make sure that you don’t have pneumonia. Pulmonary function tests (spirometry) along with the X-ray help measure the lung function and assist in diagnosing the condition better.

Treatment options for bronchitis patients

Generally, for those with acute bronchitis, doctors would recommend drinking lots of fluids (water, juice, and soup), getting plenty of rest and avoiding smoke or harsh fumes. They may also prescribe bronchodilators, which widen the airways and help breathe easier. Cough syrups contain bronchodilators. However, inhalation devices can be more effective for this action. In chronic bronchitis patients, oral steroids may be administered to reduce bronchial inflammation. In addition, supplemental oxygen is administered when necessary.

As most instances of lung infection in acute bronchitis are caused by viruses, antibiotics are not necessary and will not help. The phlegm-producing cough is your body’s natural way of getting rid of excess mucous. Taking an aspirin or acetaminophen-containing medicine can ease the discomfort. In cases of chronic bronchitis, patients are more susceptible to pneumonia and influenza infections. Therefore, it is advisable to take yearly flu vaccines and vaccinations against pneumonia.

Home Remedies for Bronchitis

If you have acute bronchitis and experience coughing, wheezing or fever then it is best to take rest and stay home until the infection passes. Drink lots of water and keep your body warm. Consider utilizing a vaporizer or inhale steam.

If you have chronic bronchitis, then try to stay away from paint, exhaust fumes, dust, pollution and people with colds or infections. Consider utilizing a vaporizer or inhale steam. Try to quit smoking, if you have been a long-term smoker. Try to avoid alcohol and caffeine as they interact with some cough suppressant medications.

Some general home remedies for both forms of bronchitis include:

  • Ginger – It has anti-inflammatory and immune boosting properties
  • Garlic – It has antibiotic and anti-viral properties
  • Turmeric – It has anti-inflammatory properties
  • Eucalyptus Oil – It can used while taking steam and has the ability to soften the mucous.
  • Salt Water – Gargling several times a day can relieve bronchitis symptoms
  • Honey – Can be effective to treat the cough

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