Risk Factors for Bronchitis
It may not be the time of year when people worry about the flu and other respiratory conditions, but they can occur any time of the year, especially if your loved one has risk factors that make it more likely that he’ll develop bronchitis. Having home care providers to watch over your loved one’s general health could be a way of staying on top of this situation.
Bronchitis is a condition that develops when the airways in the lungs, called bronchial tubes, become inflamed and cause excessive coughing, often with a lot of mucus production. Bronchitis can be acute (short-term) or chronic (long-term). Acute bronchitis, which is more common, is usually caused by airway inflammation from viral infections, such as the cold, influenza (flu), or COVID-19.
Bronchitis symptoms include having a persistent cough that doesn’t go away after several weeks. If your home care provider has noticed a cough that doesn’t get better, you should have your loved one examined by his physician. Other symptoms include wheezing, a runny nose, fever, and tiredness. The fever may not be high so have his home care provider take his temperature if he is having the other symptoms to see if he has a fever as well.
Although most people recover within a few weeks of bronchitis, it can lead to more dangerous conditions such as pneumonia, chronic bronchitis, or COPD.
Your loved one may be at a higher risk of developing bronchitis if he already has some of these risk factors.
- He is a smoker.
Smoking increases the risk of developing both acute and chronic bronchitis. He also is at risk of developing bronchitis if he lives with a smoker. Anyone providing care for your loved one – whether it’s family or a home care professional, should not smoke in his presence or where he lives.
- He has other breathing conditions.
Having asthma, COPD or other breathing conditions can make it easier for him to come down with bronchitis. His lungs are already weakened by the prior condition, making it harder for his body to fight off any infection that may enter them.
- He has another autoimmune disease.
Other illnesses that cause inflammation may make him more likely to develop bronchitis when exposed to it.
- He has chronic acid reflux.
GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease, or chronic acid reflux) is a condition in which acid-containing contents in the stomach regularly leak back up into the esophagus, the tube that travels from the throat to the stomach. The symptoms of GERD can injure the lining of the throat, airways, and lungs, making it more likely to be susceptible to bronchitis.
- He’s been exposed to other air pollutants.
Highly polluted cities often have more cases of bronchitis and those who worked in environments that had a lot of air pollution may be more likely to develop bronchitis because of the damage to their lungs.
If your loved one develops bronchitis, he may be prescribed medications to deal with the symptoms (such as the coughing) but he’ll need to take care and have plenty of rest until it clears out. Having a humidifier in the room where he sleeps and sitting in a steamy bathroom can help soften mucus so that he can breathe easier.
If you or a family member need to hire Home Care Services in Great Neck NY or the surrounding areas, contact the caring professionals at Star Multi Care Services today at (631)956-8835. We are the Right Choice for Home Health Care Services!
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