When Should You See A Doctor
If you have asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease you should ask your doctor for advice. They may have given you recommendations about increasing your inhaler medication or taking a ‘rescue pack’ of antibiotics and steroid tablets at the first sign of an infection. If not, speak with them for advice if you develop symptoms of a chest infection.
There are a number of symptoms that mean you should see a GP even if you do not have any other lung problems. They include:
- If a fever, wheezing or headache becomes worse or severe.
- If you develop fast breathing, shortness of breath, or chest pains.
- If you cough up blood or if your phlegm becomes dark or rusty-coloured.
- If you become drowsy or confused.
- If a cough lasts for longer than 3-4 weeks.
- If you have repeated bouts of acute bronchitis.
- If any other symptom develops that you are concerned about.
What Happens If I Get Pneumonia
How your pneumonia is treated will depend on what type you have and how severe your pneumonia is. Pneumonia can affect just one section or lobe of your lungs, or every space of both lungs.
If your pneumonia was caused by a bacterial infection, or fluids that collect after aspiration become infected, antibiotics may be prescribed to you. Fungal pneumonias can also be treated with antifungal medications.
When your pneumonia is caused by a virus, antibiotics and antifungals wont help. For some viruses, like influenza, an antiviral medication may be used. Otherwise, supportive care maybe even in a hospital is the best way to treat viral pneumonia.
Severe cases of pneumonia regardless of what caused it may require treatment with more intense therapies like supplemental oxygen, breathing treatments, or even mechanical ventilation.
What Other Problems Can Pneumonia Cause
Sometimes pneumonia can cause serious complications such as:
- Bacteremia, which happens when the bacteria move into the bloodstream. It is serious and can lead to .
- Lung abscesses, which are collections of pus in cavities of the lungs
- Pleural disorders, which are conditions that affect the pleura. The pleura is the tissue that covers the outside of the lungs and lines the inside of your chest cavity.
- Respiratory failure
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Tips For Regaining Your Strength After Severe Pneumonia
- Get plenty of rest
- Slowly start moving around once you’re ready but don’t overdo it
- Complete any treatments prescribed by your doctor
- Eat a nutritious diet
- Quit smoking and avoid second-hand smoke
- Limit exposure to throat irritants, including pollution and alcohol
- Perform deep breathing exercises
- Consult with your doctor before returning to exercise
Aim to slowly work back into your usual routine and be sure to take note of any signs that the infection may be coming back.
“Pneumonia can be incredibly taxing and there’s no one-size-fits-all to recovery. Some people feel better in about six weeks, but it can take several months for others to feel better after severe pneumonia,” adds Dr. Lee. “Most importantly, be patient with your body.”
If your recovery is prolonged, a specialized program focused on pulmonary rehabilitation may help get you back on track.
Risk Factors For Pneumonia
Certain groups of people are more susceptible to developing pneumonia and are at higher risk of suffering from its complications. They include
- Newborn infants and children whose age is 2 years or less.
- Individuals above 65 years of age.
- Those under medications or already suffering from any disease are at a higher risk due to their weakened immunity.
- Smokers and people who misuse drugs also have a higher probability of developing pneumonia.
If your symptoms are severe or you have been suffering from pneumonia for a long period without treatment, get medical help immediately. The emphasis on treating pneumonia at the earliest should not be taken lightly. This is because, if left untreated, it can become life-threatening. Hence, use these home remedies to treat pneumonia as soon as you observe the onset of its symptoms and do let us know if you found them useful.
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How To Treat Pneumonia In Covid Know What The Doctor Has To Say
Covid-19 pneumonia treatment requires proper medical attention. Here are some doctor tips to treat it. Read on.
Pneumonia can develop in the lungs when a bacteria or virus causes infection resulting in major damage and inflammation. The fluid and debris build-up on the lungs can make it difficult for an individual to breathe. In fact, oxygen therapy and ventilator support is required if the condition gets worse. No matter which bacteria or virus caused it, pneumonia can make the patient’s condition very critical, even life-threatening. When we talk about COVID pneumonia, the damage to the lungs is caused by the Coronavirus, i.e the virus responsible for COVID-19 disease.
Novel Coronavirus can have an impact on any organ of our body, but the most damage occurs on the respiratory system. Pneumonia associated with the novel coronavirus was earlier named as novel coronavirus-infected pneumonia . However, it was later changed by the WHO to COVID pneumonia. Onlymyhealth editorial team talked to Dr. Ankit Singhal, Pulmonologist, Sri Balaji Action Medical Institute, New Delhi, about the treatment of Covid pneumonia.
Types Of Walking Pneumonia
Walking pneumonia is one of more than 30 different types of pneumonia. It can be divided into a few different subtypes, including:
This type of pneumonia tends to be mild, and most people recover without treatment. Its caused by the bacterium Mycoplasma pneumoniae . The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that there are about of M. pneumoniae infections each year in the United States.
This type of walking pneumonia is caused by Chlamydia pneumoniae bacteria. While it can cause a serious infection, most people experience only mild illness or no symptoms whatsoever. Its common among school-age children and young adults.
Legionnaires disease is one of the most serious types of walking pneumonia, as it can lead to both respiratory failure and death. Its caused by Legionella, a type of bacteria found in freshwater that can contaminate water systems in buildings. People can get this disease if they inhale airborne droplets of water that contain the bacteria.
Walking pneumonia symptoms are typically mild and look like the common cold. People may start noticing signs of walking pneumonia between 1 and 4 weeks of being exposed to the pathogen that caused the disease.
Symptoms of walking pneumonia can include:
- loss of appetite
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What Are Complications Of Pneumonia
There are a number of potential complications of pneumonia. The infection that causes pneumonia can spread to the bloodstream, causing . Sepsis is a serious condition that can result in lowering of blood pressure and failure of oxygen to reach the tissues of the body, resulting in the need for intensive care management. Another complication is the accumulation of fluid in the space between the lung tissue and the chest wall lining, known as a pleural effusion. The organisms responsible for the pneumonia may infect the fluid in a pleural effusion, known as an empyema. Pneumonia can also result in the formation of an abscess within the lungs or airways.
How To Treat Pneumonia In Covid
How to treat pneumonia in Covid? Until now, no medicine has been approved for treating COVID-19 pneumonia completely. The course of treatment is symptomatic. Dr. Ankit said, the treatment of Covid pneumonia varies depending on the severity. Mild cases only require supportive care and there is no need of oxygen cylinders or ventilator. It can be managed as the condition is not poor. Sometimes, the patient responds to conservative treatment but it can gradually progress to severe pneumonia. If hospitalised for Covid pneumonia, the patient is put on oxygen support. Severe patients are put on a ventilator to help with breathing and IV fluids are given to prevent dehydration.
In some cases, people with primary viral pneumonia get infected with secondary bacterial pneumonia. Antibiotics can be prescribed to treat this condition. Some medicines have been found to treat the symptoms of COVID-19 pneumonia. Besides hospital admission and medications, according to Dr. Ankit, here are some natural ways to treat the symptoms of pneumonia in Covid:
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What Are The Causes Of Pneumonia
Pneumonia is commonly caused by an infection with a germ. The germ is usually a bacterium or a virus. There are three or four different bacteria that are the most common causes of pneumonia. There is also a well-known group of bacteria that causes pneumonia in about 3 out of 10 cases. They are called atypicals. Other germs such as fungi, yeasts, or protozoa can sometimes also cause pneumonia.
Rarely, non-infective pneumonia is caused by inhaling poisons or chemicals. Many different substances can cause this. They can be in the form of liquids, gases, small particles, dust or fumes.
You may breathe in some bacteria, viruses, or other germs. If you are normally healthy, a small number of germs usually doesn’t matter. They will be trapped in your phlegm and killed by your immune system. Sometimes the germs multiply and cause lung infections. This is more likely to happen if you are already in poor health – for example:
- If you are frail or elderly.
- If you have a chest disease.
- If you have a low immunity to infection. Low immunity can be caused by such things as alcohol dependence, AIDS, or another serious illness.
However, even healthy people sometimes develop pneumonia.
Pneumonia can sometimes develop after an operation, particularly in the region of your head or neck. Having an anaesthetic can increase the risk.
Ginger Or Turmeric Tea
A persistent cough can result in chest pain. Drinking warm tea made with fresh ginger or turmeric root may help reduce this pain.
The roots of both of these plants can have a natural anti-inflammatory effect in the body.
Chop up a thumb sized piece of either root and boil it in a pint or so of water. If a person prefers strong tea, they can boil it for longer or add more of the root. If the flavor is too sharp, they can try adding a spoonful of honey.
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Are Side Effects Associated With The Pneumonia Vaccine
Side effects of PCV13 in children include drowsiness, temporary loss of appetite, or redness, swelling, or tenderness where the shot was given. Mild fever and irritability are other common side effects. Adults receiving pneumococcal vaccines have reported pain, redness, rash, and swelling where the shot was given also mild fever, fatigue, headache, chills, or muscle pain.
Any type of vaccine has the potential to cause an allergic reaction, which can be severe, but this side effect is rare. This would happen within minutes to a few hours after receiving the vaccine.
Can I Prevent Pneumonia
The routine vaccinations that most people receive as kids help prevent certain types of pneumonia and other infections. If you have a chronic illness, such as sickle cell disease, you may have received extra vaccinations and disease-preventing antibiotics to help prevent pneumonia and other infections caused by bacteria.
People should get a pneumococcal vaccination if they have diseases that affect their immune system , are 65 years or older, or are in other high-risk groups. Depending on the bugs that are likely to affect them, these people also may get antibiotics to prevent pneumonia, as well as antiviral medicine to prevent or lessen the effects of viral pneumonia.
Doctors recommend that everyone 6 months and older get an annual flu shot. That’s because someone with the flu could then come down with pneumonia. Call your doctor’s office or check your local health department to see when these vaccines are available.
Because pneumonia is often caused by germs, a good way to prevent it is to keep your distance from anyone you know who has pneumonia or other respiratory infections. Use separate drinking glasses and eating utensils wash your hands often with warm, soapy water and avoid touching used tissues and paper towels.
You also can stay strong and help avoid some of the illnesses that might lead to pneumonia by eating as healthily as possible, getting a minimum of 8 to 10 hours of sleep a night, and not smoking.
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Pneumonia In The Elderly: Symptoms Causes Treatment & Recovery
Pneumonia, an infection of the lungs, kills more than 50,000 Americans a year, the majority of whom are 65 or older. Pneumonia attacks air sacs in the lungs, causing them to become inflamed and sometimes filled with fluid. The air sacs are responsible for moving oxygen from the lungs to the blood, so pneumonia results in breathing problems and lowers the level of oxygen in the blood.More than 30 different organisms are responsible for the different kinds of pneumonia, which are classified by what kind of germ causes them and the setting in which people catch them.
How Long Is Pneumonia Contagious
It is impossible to say with certainty exactly how long an adult or child with pneumonia is contagious, since this varies according to the type of germ or organism that caused the pneumonia. This contagious period can range from one to two days to weeks. In general, while an infected person is coughing or sneezing, there is the potential to release contaminated droplets into the air.
Many bacterial pneumonias are much less contagious after antibiotics have been taken for about 24-48 hours. However, this time period may vary for some organisms. For example, with tuberculosis, it can take two weeks or more of antibiotics before the person is no longer contagious. With viral pneumonias, the patient becomes less contagious after the symptoms have improved, especially fever. Some people with viral pneumonia may not be contagious after one to two days with no fever, but others may still shed some infectious virus particles for a much longer time.
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Bronchitis Vs Pneumonia: Why Theyre Related And How Theyre Different
A pneumonia diagnosis is based on your medical history, a physical exam, and certain test results. Your doctor determines which type of pneumonia you have based on how you became infected, what your X-ray or lung exam reveals, and which kind of germ is responsible for your infection.
During a physical exam, your doctor will check your vital signs and listen to your lungs with a stethoscope. Decreased breath sounds is an indication of a lot of inflammation, says Michelle Barron, MD, a professor in the division of infectious diseases at University of Colorado School of Medicine in Aurora.
If your doctor suspects pneumonia, they may order further diagnostic tests, such as a chest X-ray to help determine the extent of the infection. Blood tests and an analysis of the patients sputum can pinpoint whats causing the pneumonia. Pulse oximetry measures the oxygen level in your blood .
Based On How It Was Acquired
- Aspiration Pneumonia: If you happen to develop pneumonia by inhaling bacteria from foods, drinks or saliva, it is called aspiration pneumonia. This type usually occurs when the infected individual has difficulty in swallowing.
- Ventilator-Associated Pneumonia: Individuals using a ventilator can also develop pneumonia.
Now that you are familiar with the types of pneumonia, understanding its causes is a lot easier.
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Causes Of Walking Pneumonia
Walking pneumonia can be caused by viruses or bacteria. According to the American Lung Association, most cases are caused by M. pneumoniae, a common type of bacteria that usually affects children and adults under the age of 40. M. pneumoniae infections tend to peak in summer and early fall but can happen throughout the year.
Chlamydophila pneumoniae can also cause walking pneumonia. Infections from this type of bacteria are common in all four seasons. It often spreads in crowded environments, like college dorms and long-term care facilities.
Adults and children can also contract walking pneumonia from viruses. Respiratory syncytial virus is a frequent cause of walking pneumonia in young kids, while adults tend to get the viral form of the disease from the influenza virus.
What About Recurrent Pneumonia
If you are treated, get well and then the pneumonia recurs, it might be a sign that your immune system or lungs have a problem. You are advised to take immunity tests if you have a case of recurrent pneumonia.
Symptoms of recurrent pneumonia may vary depending on the type. There are three different types of pneumonia – that is viral, bacterial and mycoplasmal. The intensity of the infection could also vary the symptoms of pneumonia. Most people experience a range of symptoms ranging from flu symptoms to severe medical conditions.
Bacterial infections cause bacterial pneumonia. These bacteria are found in the throat and due to weak immunity they spread to the lungs. When it gets to the lungs the air sacs get infected – meaning they get pus and produce excess mucus making breathing difficult. Treatment of this type of pneumonia is done using antibiotics.
Most pneumonia cases are as a result of viral pneumonia. Examples of virus include chickenpox, measles and influenza. Viral infections are not exactly treatable by use of antibiotics. Instead, they resolve with time.
Other causes of pneumonia include:
Pneumonia In The Elderly
Elderly patients with pneumonia may not exhibit typical symptoms or physical examination findings seen in younger adults, such as pleuritic chest pain, cough, fever, and leukocytosis. Signs and symptoms more frequently seen in older adults include falls, decreased appetite, or functional impairment. A change in mental status should prompt evaluation for an infectious cause., As with any adult, risk factors for atypical or drug-resistant pathogens should guide treatment. Elderly patients with history of stroke or known dysphagia are at an increased risk for aspiration pneumonia. Residents of nursing homes or long-term care facilities are at an increased risk for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus or multidrug-resistant pathogens.