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Bronchitis (cont.)

Bronchitis Self-Care and Home Remedies

  • The majority of cases of bronchitis stem from viral infections. This means that most cases of bronchitis are short-term and require nothing more than treatment of symptoms to relieve discomfort.
  • Antibiotics will not cure a viral illness.
    • Experts in the field of infectious disease have been warning for years that overuse of antibiotics allows bacteria to become resistant to the antibiotics available.
    • Doctors often prescribe antibiotics because they feel pressured by patient's expectations to receive them. Don't expect to receive a prescription for an antibiotic if your infection is caused by a virus.
  • Acetaminophen (Tylenol), aspirin, ibuprofen (Motrin, Nuprin, Advil), or naproxen (Aleve) will help with fever and muscle aches.
  • Drinking fluids is very important because fever causes the body to lose fluid faster. Lung secretions will be thinner and easier to clear when the patient is well hydrated.
  • A cool mist vaporizer or humidifier can help decrease bronchial irritation.
  • An over-the-counter (OTC) cough suppressant may be helpful. Preparations with guaifenesin (Robitussin, Breonesin, Mucinex) will loosen secretions; dextromethorphan-the "DM" in most over the counter medications (Benylin, Pertussin, Trocal, Vicks 44) suppresses cough.
  • Natural treatments and home remedies for bronchitis include honey, lemon, ginger, bay leaf, and almonds. Each of these foods has properties that reportedly reduce symptoms of bronchitis. Consult your health care professional  before taking or using any natural remedies.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 11/3/2014

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Bronchitis is an inflammation of the bronchial tubes, or bronchi.

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