Chest infection can be defined as a state when your lung is infected. The infection can occur in larger airways. In this case it is called bronchitis. When the infection occurs in smaller air sacs, it is called pneumonia. The most common chest infections symptoms include an accumulation of fluid and pus; the airways get swollen thus making the breathing difficult.
Chest infection is a risk for people of any age. Children and elderly people are more prone to the disease. It is also necessary to mention smokers and sick people.
Pneumonia is one of chest infections. It usually occurs in spring and winter. The disease may come unexpectedly or come slowly, during several days. As for the symptoms, they are individual and depend on such factors as the age of the patient, the severity and the causes of the infection as well as the health problems you might have. Traditionally, pneumonia is characterized by the following symptoms: difficult or fast breathing, fever, shivering, sweating, chills, blue color of the lips, chest pain, general pains and aches, coughing with green or brown phlegm, feeling unwell, stomach pain, headaches, appetite loss and others. As for the children, they can even vomit, be irritable, lethargic and have diarrhea.
As for the chest infections causes, there are three of them, including bacteria, a virus, mycoplasma.
There are three chest infections diagnosis methods. They are the X-ray of chest, blood tests and your phlegm sample.
Chest infection may be successfully cured at home. The treatment options are as follows. First of all, it is necessary to remember that your immune system is likely to fight the infection. It is possible to use antibiotics in order to recover. If you have fever or pain, you may take some painkillers, like paracetamol. Sometimes it is necessary to prescribe hospital treatment As a rule, this concerns children and elderly people who have the risk of complications.
The treatment for chest infection caused by bacteria usually includes the use of antibiotics. You may get better after 24-48 hours as you take antibiotics. Nevertheless, you may cough for some and even weeks. As for the other kinds of the infection, it may die off gradually, so you'll feel weak for a while and maybe you'll need a longer bed rest period.
It is necessary to follow the doctor's prescriptions, though you shouldn't forget about self-care. Take your medications according to the doctor's directions. In case you get better, don't stop taking them, but take the whole medical course. Try to drink lots of fluids, have a rest during some days, try to sleep on two pillows - your sleep will get better. It is important to give up smoking, at least for a short period of time if you can't give up permanently. Be sure to contact your doctor in case you have any questions or concerns. Immediately go to your doctor or to the emergency if you have difficulty breathing, feel worse or are running a high temperature. It is possible to avoid chest infection by having vaccination. Elderly people may be vaccinated for a period of five years.