Bronchitis occurs when the bronchioles (air-carrying tubes in the lungs) are inflamed and make too much mucus. There are two basic types of bronchitis:
Chronic bronchitis: Defined as cough productive of sputum that persists for three months out of the year for at least two consecutive years. The cough and inflammation may be caused by initial respiratory infection or illness, exposure to tobacco smoke or other irritating substances in the air. Chronic bronchitis can cause airflow obstruction and then is grouped under the term chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Acute or short-term bronchitis: more common and usually is caused by a viral infection. Episodes of acute bronchitis can be related to and made worse by smoking. Acute bronchitis could last for 10 to 14 days, possibly causing symptoms for three weeks.
Sign and Symptoms
Signs and symptoms of both acute and chronic bronchitis include:
- A persistent cough, which may produce mucus
- A low fever and chills
- A feeling of tightness in the chest
- A sore throat
- Body aches
- A blocked nose and sinuses
Usually, acute bronchitis is brought on by a viral infection, though it may also be caused by a bacterial infection. The flu and colds are examples of viral infections.
Chronic bronchitis is usually, but not always, caused by smoking tobacco. It can also be caused by exposure to secondhand cigarette smoke, air pollution, dust, or toxic gases. Your risk can be increased by family history of bronchitis, having asthma and allergies, and having gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
Factors that increase your risk of bronchitis include:
- Cigarette smoke: People who smoke or who live with a smoker are at higher risk of both acute bronchitis and chronic bronchitis.
- Low resistance: This may result from another acute illness, such as a cold, or from a chronic condition that compromises your immune system. Older adults, infants and young children have greater vulnerability to infection.
- Exposure to irritants on the job: The risk of developing bronchitis is greater if an individual work around certain lung irritants, such as grains or textiles, or are exposed to chemical fumes.
- Gastric reflux: Repeated bouts of severe heartburn can irritate the throat and more prone to developing bronchitis.
Although a single episode of bronchitis usually isn’t cause for concern, it can lead to pneumonia in some people. Repeated bouts of bronchitis, however, may mean that you have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
During the first few days of illness, it can be difficult to distinguish the signs and symptoms of bronchitis from those of a common cold. During the physical exam, the doctor will use a stethoscope to listen closely to lungs as you breathe.
In some cases, the doctor may suggest the following tests:
- Chest X-ray: A chest X-ray can help determine if have pneumonia or another condition that may explain the cough. This is especially important if ever were or currently are a smoker.
- Sputum tests: Sputum is the mucus that cough up from the lungs. It can be tested to see if have illnesses that could be helped by antibiotics. Sputum can also be tested for signs of allergies.
- Pulmonary function test: During a pulmonary function test, blow into a device called a spirometer, which measures how much air the lungs can hold and how quickly can get air out of the lungs. This test checks for signs of asthma or emphysema.
Homeopathic remedies for bronchitis are of great help in its treatment and are completely safe, with no side effects. The natural Homeopathic medicines work to strike at the root cause of Bronchitis.
Remedies for bronchitis are natural medicines providing a great helping hand in easy coughing out of the mucus from the bronchi. As the mucus is effortlessly thrown out with aid of properly selected medicines, the cough, chest pain and difficulty in breathing also begin to subside and almost end.
Bryonia Alba is the top natural medicine for treating Bronchitis, and is mainly used when the cough is dry. Mucus if present is very difficult to cough out and may be rust colored. Bryonia Alba can also prove very useful for treatment of severe chest pains during coughing. The patient usually feels relieved by taking rest and gets worse on motion. The patient may show an increased thirst for large quantities of water.
Phosphorus is another very beneficial natural medicine for patients of Bronchitis. The patient mainly has a hard and dry cough. The cough is renewed by laughing and talking. Cold air usually worsens the cough. Excessive heat in the chest could be another accompanying symptom. The patient at times complains of tightness, heaviness, and oppression of chest, along with chest pains. The mucus when expectorated may be blood-stained. The patient may also have a craving for cold drinks, ice cream, and juices.
Antimonium Tart is a very effective natural remedy for Bronchitis that is mainly prescribed when the bronchial tubes are overloaded with mucus. The mucus rattles in the chest. The mucus is not coughed out with ease and if it does cough out, the quantity is meager. Antimonium Tart is of great help in emptying the bronchial tubes by aiding the expectoration of the mucus present in bronchial tubes. The respiratory troubles after exposure to damp places frequently call for use of this natural remedy.
The cases of Bronchitis that can be treated wonderfully with natural medicine Spongia are the ones presenting with dry cough and complete dryness of air passages. There is a total absence of any mucus rales in chest. Mainly warm drinks provide relief to the patient. The patient also at times complains of chest oppression, weakness and difficulty in breathing.
Ipecac is the top remedy for Bronchitis with a constant cough and rattling of mucus in the chest. Even constant coughing does not seem to help in expelling the mucus from bronchi. Ipecac helps in expelling the mucus out with the least effort. An important feature for using this medicine in Bronchitis is vomiting with coughing providing some relief to the patient.
The mucus rattles in the chest and the patient has to put in a lot of effort to cough it out. Kali Mur helps as an ideal expectorant.
It is the best choice for natural Bronchitis treatment when yellow-colored mucus is spat out.
Bronchitis with a feeling of weight in the chest, and a cough with choking and gagging that brings up thick yellow mucus, may respond to this remedy. The cough tends to be dry and tight at night, and loose in the morning. The fever may be worse in the evening and at night. Feeling too warm or being in a stuffy room tends to make the person worse, and open air brings improvement. Thirst is usually low. A person who needs this remedy often is moody and emotional and wants attention and sympathy. (This remedy is often helpful to children who are tearful when not feeling well and want to be held and comforted.)
Bronchitis with a deep, hard, racking cough can indicate a need for this remedy. The person fees that mucus is stuck in the throat and upper chest, and may cough continually to try to loosen it. A feeling of rawness and soreness can develop, or a sensation as if a rock is stuck inside. Chills can occur along with fever. Exposure to cool air aggravates the cough, but drinking something cold can help. The person may feel worse when days are cold and clear, and better in wet weather.
When a person easily gets ill after being wet and chilled (or when the weather changes from warm and dry to wet and cool) this remedy may be indicated. The cough can be tickly, hoarse, and loose, and worse from physical exertion. Tendencies toward allergies (cats, pollen, etc.) may increase the person’s susceptibility to bronchitis.
Hepar sulphuris calcareum
The cough that fits this remedy is usually hoarse and rattling, with yellow mucus coming up. The person can be extremely sensitive to cold even a minor draft or sticking an arm out from under the covers may set off jags of coughing. Cold food or drink can make things worse. A person who needs this remedy feels vulnerable both physically and emotionally, and may act extremely irritable and out of sorts.
A person who needs this remedy can have bronchitis for weeks at a stretch, or even all winter long. The cough takes effort and may bring up yellow or greenish mucus, or little granules that have an offensive smell. Stitching pains may be felt in the back when the person is coughing. Chills are felt more than heat during fever, and the person is likely to sweat at night. A person who needs this remedy is usually sensitive and nervous, with low stamina, swollen lymph nodes, and poor resistance to infection.
This remedy can be indicated when a person has had many bouts of bronchitis (sometimes the resistance has been weakened by taking antibiotics too often for minor complaints). The cough feels irritating, burning, and painful; yellow or greenish mucus may be produced. Problems can be worse if the person gets too warm in bed, and breathing problems at night may wake the person up. Redness of the eyes and mucous membranes, and foul-smelling breath and perspiration are often seen when a person needs this remedy.
A metallic, brassy, hacking cough that starts with a troublesome tickling in the upper air-tubes and brings up strings of sticky yellow mucus can indicate this remedy. A sensation of coldness may be felt inside the chest, and coughing can lead to pain behind the breastbone or extending to the shoulders. Breathing may make a rattling sound when the person sleeps. Problems are typically worse in the early morning, after eating and drinking, and from exposure to open air. The person feels best just lying in bed and keeping warm.
This remedy is often indicated for bronchitis after a cold. The cough can be troublesome and tickling, worse from lying down or stooping forward, worse from getting cold, and worse at night. Children may have fever, sweaty heads while sleeping, and be very tired. Adults may feel more chilly and have clammy hands and feet, breathing problems when walking up slopes or climbing stairs, and generally poor stamina.
Merc. is another effective remedy for bronchitis. There is roughness and soreness from the fauces down through the middle of the chest. The cough is dry, raw and concussive which is very exhausting. The sputum is watery, saliva-like, or yellow and muco-purulent. There is fever and alternation of hills and heat, desire for cold drinks, which aggravate the cough. and pasty sweat without relief.
The cases of Bronchitis that can be treated wonderfully with Homeopathic medicine Spongia are the ones presenting with dry cough and complete dryness of air passages. There is a total absence of any mucus rattles in chest. Mainly warm drinks provide relief to the patient. The patient also at times complains of chest oppression, weakness and difficulty in breathing.
Aconite will often prevent the development of a thorough bronchitis. Aconite is prescribed in bronchitis to the onset of the affection. It is caused by as a result of checked perspiration, exposure to cold, drafts or dry, cold winds. The complaint starts with a coryza, frequent sneezing. chilliness, restless sleep, full & hard pulse, and the characteristic mental condition like anxiety and restlessness.