With cold and flu season approaching, we thought we’d take this opportunity to decipher whether you are suffering from bronchitis or pneumonia. Often, the symptoms mimic one another, and it can sometimes be tough to tell which ailment you are suffering from.
Bronchitis causes an inflammation of the air passages. There are two types of bronchitis. Acute bronchitis is usually caused by colds and the flu, while chronic bronchitis is more serious and usually developed from smoking. Pneumonia is an inflection that causes fluid or pus to fill the lungs.
Do you have bronchitis or pneumonia?
Signs that you might have pneumonia:
- Your cough is so persistent or severe that it interferes with sleep or daily activities
- You have a high fever
- You have bloody, yellowish or rusty-colored sputum
- The cough lasts longer than a week
- You have symptoms of acute bronchitis and have chronic lung, heart or other medical problems, or are infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS
Signs that you might have acute bronchitis
- Hacking cough that persists for more than 5 days
- Absence of fever, although a low grade fever may occasionally be present
- Clear, yellow, white, or green phlegm
- Soreness in the chest
If your show signs of a fever (temperature above 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit), and show signs that your general well being is affected, including loss of appetite and body achiness, then pneumonia may be the cause of your symptoms.
Symptoms of chronic bronchitis may include:
- Persistent cough that produces clear, yellow, white, or green phlegm (for at least three months of the year, and for more than two years in a row)
- Feeling very tired
- Sometimes wheezing, sometimes breathlessness
Pneumonia is not something to take lightly, for if left untreated it could lead to more serious conditions, especially for elderly individuals with frail health, or weak immune systems. If this is a cause for concern, contact your doctor or come into AFC Urgent Care New Bedford, no appointment needed, 7 days a week from 8am-8pm weekdays, 8am-5pm weekends, or call us at (860) 986-6440