Bronchitis is very often acute in children whereas as it is usually a chronic condition in adolescents and adults. Bronchitis is inflammation of the bronchi or large air passages that lead to the lungs. Living in damp environments, eat poorly, are exposed to cold, are overtired, or who have caught a cold or flu virus may develop bronchitis. Acute bronchitis can be caused by other viruses, allergies, bacteria or environmental irritants.
The symptoms include coughing at night, which is initially unproductive at first but may develop and produce thick yellow phlegm, noisy rattling coughing, and a fever.
Is acute Bronchitis contagious?
As acute bronchitis describes a group of symptoms (including airway inflammation, over-production of phlegm, and cough it can be contagious if the cause is viral or bacterial. However, if the cause of the bronchitis is due to smoking, air pollution, or other inhaled irritants, it is not contagious.
What can I do to help relieve the symptoms?
At night, when the coughing is at its worst, a vaporiser may help(either a commercial one or a bowl of boiling water which can hold its heat). You can make your own vaporiser liquid or there are many brands to choose from pharmacy and health food outlets.
Typical Vaporiser liquid: each 5ml contains:
Eucalyptus oil 0.5ml
Wintergreen oil 0.1ml
Tea tree oil 0.2ml
In a base of propylene glycol to 100 per cent
The above liquid is to be used in steam vaporiser units for the treatment of the coughs of colds and bronchitis. This will ease breathing and loosen the phlegm. Also to help loosen phlegm and soothe the inflamed air passages, use the herbs liquorice, horehound, mullein, pleurisy root echinacea In combination, these will help relieve the coughing and make it more productive.
Cod liver oil has been used for decades for colds flu and bronchitis. The essential fatty acids in the oil have an anti-inflammatory effect and the vitamin A helps strengthen the mucous membranes. Garlic, vitamin C, and echinacea may help prevent further infection.
Clinically proven treatment
For centuries, the herb Pelargonium sidoides has been traditionally used in South Africa for the treatment of respiratory diseases. The common name for this herb is umckaloabo which is derived from the Zulu language and means “heavy cough”. Today specialised farms using ecological cultivation methods produce P. sidoides.
This herb is now available in Australia from Blackmores in their product Kaloba® which has been clinically proven to provide relief of acute bronchitis symptoms after 7 days (45% of the patients taking Kaloba® experienced recovery after 7 days compared to 6.4% taking a placebo), it also can help speed up recovery.