Water is Good for Bronchitis and Pneumonia

"Ahem."

That's an understatement for those inflicted with bronchitis. This obstructive pulmonary condition, best known for the heavy coughing accompanied my sputum, occurs when the bronchi in the lungs are inflamed. Bronchitis can be both acute or short term and chronic or long-lasting. People who smoke or live in polluted cities are more susceptible to coming down with this ailment.

  • Acute bronchitis usually comes on quickly but can naturally alleviate after 2 to 3 weeks. Often enough, it comes with cold symptoms such as mild headache or body aches. The majority of people who get acute bronchitis get better on their own without any problems.
  • Chronic bronchitis keeps coming back and can last a very long time, especially for those who smoke. Chronic bronchitis means you have a cough with mucus most days of the month for 3 months of the year for at least 2 years in a row. If you have chronic bronchitis, it is likely that you'd have periods when your cough and other symptoms worsen.

The more common of the two is acute. Bronchitis is usually caused by a virus that people can catch from a variety of places, and it can also develop out of the flu and upper respiratory infections. Sometimes the cause may be bacteria. (This can come into play in figuring out what medicine to take!) Basically, when the bronchial tubes become inflamed they form mucus. This creates the coughing reflex, which produces more mucus and this makes you cough more. Acute bronchitis can also be caused by breathing in things that irritate the bronchial tubes, such as smoke and food particles. Bronchitis is contagious and can be passed along to others the same way colds and viruses are. An infected person coughs, spraying viral particles in the air, where it can be inhaled in by others or onto their hands, where they can be picked up when the person shakes hands with others.

chronic bronchitis

Natural Remedies

  • The most important thing someone can do to kick away the cough is to up increase the amount of fluids they drink. This will help soothe the throat as well as keep the body hydrated. Also, it is suggested that people with bronchitis refrain from drinking caffeine and alcohol as this will only more rapidly lead to dehydration. Water in other forms can aid as well.
  • Moisture from a vaporizer can help break down mucus. Standing in a steamy shower with the bathroom door closed, keeping a pan of water at a slow boil on the stove, and using a tea kettle to shoot out warm, moist air can also help loosen and bring up the phlegm. If one is at risk for developing bronchitis, such as having the flu or a respiratory infection, increasing fluid intake can always help. Adding a few drops of peppermint or eucalyptus oil in the water can be quite soothing.
  • Gargling with salt water can provide a soothing relief to the throat by cutting some of the mucus that may be coating and irritating the throat. Use one teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water and be sure to spit out the salty water after gargling.
  • Almonds are especially known for their healing powers in respiratory illness. They are rich in potassium, calcium, and magnesium.
  • Lemons help rid the respiratory system of bacteria and mucus. Make a cup of lemon tea by grating 1 teaspoon lemon rind and adding it to 1 cup of boiling water. Why the rind? The lemon peel has the majority of the lemon’s nutrients!
  • Honey can help with the irritating cough and soothe a sore throat when eat it on its own or stir it into warm herbal tea. But do not give honey to children younger than 1 year old because it can cause a very serious food poisoning.

Pneumonia

If one does not treat bronchitis, or does not catch it in time (it is a rapid illness), it can result in pneumonia, which is more serious. Pneumonia still affects the respiratory tract, but it obstructs it even more, making it harder to breathe. Many of the symptoms are the same as fever, chest pain and cough, however coughs do not produce mucus. Usually this sickness is treatable from home, but for those with other diseases, it can be very serious and even deadly. Again, drinking water here is crucial to preventing dehydration. Many may take acetaminophen to reduce fever, but this can also cause dehydration. So, be sure to take it with plenty of water.

A healthy diet can boost your immune system and protect you from bronchitis, pneumonia and other diseases. Getting balanced nutrition requires a regular consumption of whole, natural foods such as fruits, vegetables, grains, beans, seeds, and nuts. On top of this, try to drink plenty of pure water to help the immune system function at an optimal level. Practicing a healthy lifestyle is the key to maintaining a harmonious and happy life.

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