Monday, September 26, 2022

How Did You Get Pneumonia

What Causes Pneumonia In The Elderly

How do I get pneumonia?

Pneumonia is an illness that seems to affect seniors in a radically different way than it does people in other age groups. But does it actually target seniors the way it seems to? Find out more about what pneumonia is, what causes it, how to prevent it, and whether seniors contract it in different ways from people in other age groups. If you arent sure what pneumonia is or you are curious about why its such a concern in the world of elder care, take the time to learn more about this illness.

How Can I Help Myself Feel Better

If your doctor has prescribed medicine, follow the directions carefully.

You may feel better in a room with a humidifier, which increases the moisture in the air and soothes irritated lungs. Make sure you drink plenty of fluids, especially if you have a fever. If you have a fever and feel uncomfortable, ask the doctor whether you can take over-the-counter medicine such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen to bring it down. But don’t take any medicine without checking first with your doctor a cough suppressant, for example, may not allow your lungs to clear themselves of mucus.

And finally, be sure to rest. This is a good time to sleep, watch TV, read, and lay low. If you treat your body right, it will repair itself and you’ll be back to normal in no time.

How To Regain Strength After Pneumonia

If you have pneumonia, the first priority is clearing the infection causing it.

This means following your doctor’s treatment plan very closely. Yes, getting plenty of rest. And, yes, taking every single pill in the bottle of antibiotics your doctor prescribed you if your pneumonia is bacterial in nature.

But, even after your primary symptoms fade away, you may be left feeling lousy, with low energy and/or dealing with a cough that just won’t quit. In some cases, you may feel weak for months.

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How Does Your Upper Airway Defend Against Pneumonia

Your nose is your first line of defense against pneumonia. Nasal hair traps larger droplets and filters the air. Besides the visible hair, the inside of your nose also has small microscopic hair-like objects called cilia. These cilia are constantly moving in a sweeping manner. They trap bacteria and sweep them away.

Cilia are present in your airway all the way from your nose to deep inside your lungs. Anything that affects cilia and their ability to sweep away bacteria makes it easier for bacteria to invade deeper into your lungs, causing pneumonia.

What Can I Do At Home To Feel Better

Do You Have To Get Pneumonia Shot Every Year

In addition to taking any antibiotics and/or medicine your doctor prescribes, you should also:

  • Get lots of rest. Rest will help your body fight the infection.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. Fluids will keep you hydrated. They can help loosen the mucus in your lungs. Try water, warm tea, and clear soups.
  • Stop smoking if you smoke and avoid secondhand smoke. Smoke can make your symptoms worse. Smoking also increases your risk of developing pneumonia and other lung problems in the future. You should also avoid lit fireplaces or other areas where the air may not be clean.
  • Stay home from school or work until your symptoms go away. This usually means waiting until your fever breaks and you arent coughing up mucus. Ask your doctor when its okay for you to return to school or work.
  • Use a cool-mist humidifier or take a warm bath. This will help clear your lungs and make it easier for you to breathe.

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How Is Bacterial Pneumonia Diagnosed

Your healthcare provider will ask about your signs and symptoms and examine you. You may need any of the following tests:

  • Pulse oximetry measures the amount of oxygen in your blood.
  • Blood tests are used to check for infection.
  • A chest x-ray may show signs of infection in your lungs.
  • A mucus sample is collected and tested for the germ that is causing your illness. It can help your healthcare provider choose the best medicine to treat the infection.

Etiology Of Bacterial Pneumonia

Although pneumonia may be caused by myriad pathogens, a limited number of agents are responsible for most cases, Most authors categorize bacterial pneumonias by their infectious agents, which include pneumococcal agents Haemophilus influenzaeKlebsiella, Staphylococcus, and Legionella species gram-negative organisms and aspirated micro-organisms. Microaspiration of organisms that colonize the upper respiratory tract and mucosal surfaces is probably the most common mode of infection. Some agents, notably Staphylococcus species, may be spread hematogenously.

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What Is Walking Pneumonia

Walking pneumonia is a mild case of pneumonia. It is often caused by a virus or the mycoplasma pneumoniae bacteria. When you have walking pneumonia, your symptoms may not be as severe or last as long as someone who has a more serious case of pneumonia. You probably wont need bed rest or to stay in the hospital when you have walking pneumonia.

Things You Should Know About Pneumonia

What can I do to prevent getting pneumonia?

Pneumonia is an infection that causes the air sacs in the lungs to fill up with fluid or pus, which makes it harder to breathe. The most common symptoms are cough that may be dry or produce phlegm, fever, chills and fatigue. Other symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and pain in the chest. and shortness of breath. Signs that indicate a more severe infection are shortness of breath, confusion, decreased urination and lightheadedness. In the U.S., pneumonia accounts for 1.3 visits to the Emergency Department, and 50,000 deaths annually.

With the COVID-19 pandemic continuing to affect people around the world, pneumonia has become an even larger health concern. Some people infected with the COVID-19 have no symptoms, while others may experience fever, body ache, dry cough, fatigue, chills, headache, sore throat, loss of appetite, and loss of smell.

The more severe symptoms of COV-19, such as high fever, severe cough, and shortness of breath, usually mean significant lung involvement. The lungs can be damaged by overwhelming COVID-19 viral infection, severe inflammation, and/or a secondary bacterial pneumonia. COVID-19 can lead to long lasting lung damage.

Here are other important facts you should know about pneumonia:,

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  • The best way to prevent pneumonia is to take advantage of vaccinations. Pneumonia often follows the flu, so getting a yearly flu vaccination is key.

    For those in high-risk populations, three types of pneumonia vaccines are currently available: PCV13 or pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, which protects against a few serotypes of Streptococal bacteria PPSV23 or pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine, which protects against many more and Hib, or Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine.

    Each has certain risks and recommendations, so check with your health care provider to be sure the vaccine is safe for you or your family.

    How Can You Tell If Pneumonia Is Viral Or Bacterial

    While the process of combining the presence of respiratory symptoms with an abnormal exam and X-ray helps to delineate the cause of pneumonia, the only gold standard test to confirm the presence of a specific pathogen is a culture (a sample of respiratory mucous secretions or blood that is analyzed in the lab for the

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    Why Does It Take So Long To Recover From Pneumonia

    You can’t see the damage pneumonia causes, but you certainly feel it.

    The air sacs in your lungs become inflamed during pneumonia, leading to soreness and pain. If the infection and inflammation progress, your lungs may fill with fluid and dead lung tissue, leading to the green, yellow or even bloody mucus you cough up. This fluid may also affect how well oxygen is able to transfer into your bloodstream, leading to difficulty breathing.

    “Once the infection is cleared with treatment, your body still has to deal with removing all of the fluid, damage and debris left behind in your lungs. This can take a few weeks, resulting in a lingering cough and reduced lung capacity,” explains Dr. Lee. “During this time, you may find physical exertion more tiring than usual.”

    A more severe case of pneumonia can cause even more damage to your lungs, which can be significant and even permanent in some cases.

    “After severe pneumonia, lung capacity is reduced and muscles may be weak from being so ill. Significant weight loss can further contribute to weakness and other health conditions may be aggravated due to the stress placed on the body during illness. These are all things your body will need time to recover from,” says Dr. Lee.

    In fact, it may take another several months for you to fully heal and regain strength.

    Signs Of Pneumonia In Children

    What is pneumonia disease?

    Pneumonia typically spreads from person to person. Because children spend more time indoors in cooler or cold weather, they may be more exposed to the illness during fall, winter, and early spring. The clothes your child wears or the temperature outside do not stop them from getting pneumonia.

    The symptoms of pneumonia can vary from child to child. Your childâs symptoms and their severity can depend on whether bacteria or a virus caused the illness. Children infected by bacteria typically present symptoms like:

    • Fever
    • Lack of appetite
    • Unusual tiredness

    Itâs often hard to tell whether bacteria or a virus causes your childâs pneumonia. If the cause is a virus, then breathing problems may come on more slowly. Your child may start wheezing and develop a worsening cough. Symptoms that often show up with viral pneumonia include:

    • Rapid or harsh breathing
    • Chills
    • General fussiness

    Some parents mistake the initial signs of pneumonia as a cold or other illness. If your childâs symptoms get worse, take them in for medical treatment.

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    Questions To Ask Your Doctor

    • I have a chronic condition. Am I at higher risk for pneumonia?
    • Do I have bacterial, viral, or fungal pneumonia? Whats the best treatment?
    • Am I contagious?
    • How serious is my pneumonia? Will I need to be hospitalized?
    • What can I do at home to help relieve my symptoms?
    • What are the possible complications of pneumonia? How will I know if Im developing complications?
    • What should I do if my symptoms dont respond to treatment or get worse?
    • Do we need to schedule a follow-up exam?
    • Do I need any vaccines?

    Early Stage Of Pneumonia

    The symptoms of the first stage of pneumonia, or what you might expect in the first 24 hours, are very important to understand. When pneumonia is detected at this stage, and promptly treated, the severity of the disease and potential complications may be reduced.

    Most commonly, lobar pneumonia begins suddenly with fairly dramatic symptoms.

    With pneumonia , the tiniest airways of the lungs are affected. Since this is where the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide takes place , pneumonia may cause symptoms related to lower oxygen levels in the body. In addition, lobar pneumonia often extends to the membranes surrounding the lungs , which can lead to particular symptoms.

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    Who Is Most At Risk For Getting Pneumonia

    People who have an increased risk of pneumonia include:

    • People over the age of 65 and infants under age 2. The weakening immune system of older people makes them less able to fight off illnesses. Similarly, the immune system of infants is still developing and not at full-strength, making them more susceptible to infection.
    • People with a health-caused weakened immune system. Examples include:
    • People who are receiving chemotherapy
    • Transplanted organ recipients
    • People who have HIV/AIDS
    • People with autoimmune disease and who are taking medications that suppress the immune system.
  • People who have health conditions that affect the lungs or heart. Examples include:
  • Stroke
  • People who are in the hospital. In particular, people in the ICU or anyone recovering who spends a large amounts of time lying on their backs. This position allows fluids, mucus or germs to settle in the lungs. People who need ventilators to breathe are at even greater risk since they have a difficult time coughing up germs that could cause a lung infection.
  • People who smoke or drink alcohol. Smoking damages lung tissue and long-term alcohol abuse weakens the immune system.
  • People who are exposed to toxic fumes, chemicals or secondhand smoke. These contaminants weaken lung function and make it easier to develop a lung infection.
  • How Soon After Treatment For Pneumonia Will I Begin To Feel Better

    How Can People Get Pneumonia

    How soon you will feel better depends on several factors, including:

    • Your age
    • The cause of your pneumonia
    • The severity of your pneumonia
    • If you have other at-risk conditions

    If you are generally healthy, most symptoms of bacterial pneumonia usually begin to improve within 24 to 48 hours after starting treatment. Symptoms of viral pneumonia usually begin to improve within a few days after starting treatment. A cough can last for several weeks. Most people report being tired for about a month after contracting pneumonia.

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    When Would I Need To Be Hospitalized For Pneumonia

    If your case of pneumonia is more severe, you may need tostay in the hospital for treatment. Hospital treatments may include:

    • Oxygen
    • Fluids, antibiotics and other medicines given through an IV
    • Breathing treatments and exercises to help loosen mucus

    People most likely to be hospitalized are those who are most frail and/or at increased risk, including:

    • Babies and young children
    • People with weakened immune systems
    • People with health conditions that affect the heart and lungs

    It may take six to eight weeks to return to a normal level of functioning and well-being if youve been hospitalized with pneumonia.

    Preventing Pneumonia In Children

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends vaccinating children with the PVC13 vaccine. It helps prevent pneumonia from developing in children 2 years old and younger. The â13â in the PVC13 vaccine means it defends children against 13 variations of the pneumococcal disease. You should discuss the vaccine option with your childâs healthcare provider. Itâs also a good idea to verify that your child is up-to-date on all other recommended vaccines for their age group.

    Children can start receiving doses of the PVC13 vaccine when they are two months old. After that, they should receive booster shots periodically until they turn 15 months old. It only takes one dose of PVC13 to immunize children between the ages of 2 and 5 who have not previously received the vaccine. The same goes for children aged 2 to 18 who have certain medical conditions and have never gotten a PVC13 vaccination.

    The pneumococcal polysaccharide pneumonia vaccine is also recommended for children between the ages of 2 and 5 who have a higher risk of developing pneumonia, including those who have:

    • Heart disease

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    Cover Your Mouth And Nose

    While the preferred method for covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze is into a tissue, not everyone can get to tissues in time when the urge to cough or sneeze hits. If you have the urge to cough or sneezeand a tissue isnt availablethe next best thing is to cover your mouth or nose with the inside of your elbow.

    Coughing or sneezing into your elbow will decrease the chances of your leaving traces of your infection on door handles, faucets, or anything else you touch.

    Pneumonia Isnt Something You Can Diagnose Yourself

    Pneumonia the Silent Killer

    Although you may suspect you have pneumonia based on your symptoms, only a doctor can tell for sure.

    Ward says that pneumonia is diagnosed with a combination of the following:

    • A physical exam, to listen for abnormal sounds in the lungs and to see how the patient is breathing
    • Vital signs, to check temperature, heart and respiratory rate, blood pressure and oxygen saturation
    • Blood tests, to check for signs of inflammation or blood infection
    • Chest X-ray, to look for evidence of infection in the lung tissues

    Sometimes, special tests are utilized to examine respiratory secretions to help diagnose certain types of infectious pneumonia, she adds.

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    More Severe Cases May Also Cause:

    • quick breathing
    • rapid heartbeat
    • nausea and vomiting

    Some people get a sharp pain in their chest when they breathe in and out. This may be because the thin lining between the lung and ribcage, called the pleura, is infected and inflamed. This inflammation, called pleurisy, stops your lungs moving smoothly as you breathe.

    The symptoms of pneumonia are often very similar to those of other chest infections, such as bronchitis, COPD flare-ups or bronchiectasis flare-ups. To get a proper diagnosis youll need to visit your GP.

    If you feel unwell with these symptoms, see your GP or call 111. If you have chest pain, a rapid heartbeat, quick breathing, shivers or confusion, get urgent advice from your GP or call 999. Take extra care if youre over 65.

    Covid Pneumonia: How Long Does Recovery Take

    You’re likely familiar with the common, mild symptoms of COVID-19 including fever, dry cough and fatigue.

    But, in more severe cases, COVID-19 can also cause serious complications, including pneumonia.

    “We still have a lot to learn about COVID-19, particularly about the havoc it can wreak on the lungs and the pneumonia it causes, which is often now called COVID pneumonia,” says Dr. Rayman Lee, pulmonologist at Houston Methodist.

    That being said, there’s still plenty that experts like Dr. Lee do know about COVID pneumonia, including about how long it can take to fully recover from it.

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