Bronchitis is a disease which affects the respiratory system. It is the inflammation of bronchial passages in the lungs which can shut off or restrict smaller airways in the lungs. This can result in coughing fits or breathlessness.
Bronchitis can be classified as acute or chronic. Generally, acute bronchitis lasts a week or so. Chronic can last months and be frequent.
Acute bronchitis is frequently viral but can at times be bacterial. Chronic bronchitis is often long term and requires medical attention. Those who smoke may find it hard to recover from bronchitis and may develop chronic bronchitis.
Chronic bronchitis can be caused by smoking or exposure to industrial pollutants. Acute bronchitis is often caused by an infection within the lung.
Coughing with phlegm is a major symptom of bronchitis as is soreness in the chest. Chronic bronchitis may also be accompanied by wheezing and tiredness.
Bronchitis can be treated with rest, fluids, and avoiding smoke. Prescription bronchiodialtors or cough syrups can sometimes be prescribed to alleviate symptoms. While not necessary, an antibiotic may be prescribed if the infection is bacterial. Those with chronic bronchitis are often more prone to further infections such as the flu or pneumonia so flu and pneumonia vaccines are highly recommended.
If you experience symptoms of bronchitis, visit AFC Urgent Care in North Andover today. We can diagnose and treat you on site. Our office is open 7 days a week with low wait times. We accept most insurances and offer low costs for those without coverage. Visit us today at 129 Turnpike St in North Andover or call 978-470-0800.