Bronchitis . . . is a short term or long term swelling of the mucous membranes of the lungs.
Acute bronchitis is characterized by a cough that releases sputum, fever, mucus-secreting structures growing larger, and back pain. It is caused by the spread of viral infections to the bronchi, the swelling often occurs with childhood infections, such as measles, whooping cough, diphtheria, and typhoid fevers. Chronic bronchitis is characterized by an excess release of mucus in the bronchi with a cough that releases sputum for at least 3 months in at least 2 years. Additional symptoms are many lung infections, blue skin from lack of oxygen, less oxygen and more carbon dioxide in the blood, and a risk to develop a heart disease and breathing problems Factors that may cause chronic bronchitis include cigarette smoking, air pollution. Long-term infections, and abnormal growth of the bronchi.
Bronchitis is the inflammation or obstruction of the bronchi or the breathing tubes that lead to the lungs. The inflammation is followed by coughing and expectoration, fever, back and chest pain, sore throat and breathing difficulties.
Acute bronchitis typically follows upper respiratory tract infections such as influenza and often lead to pneumonia. Acute bronchitis is common in viral infections and, in a healthy adult, is rarely serious, but in infants and small children, respiratory obstruction may be severe and life threatening.
Chronic bronchitis results from frequent irritation of the lungs, but is not an infection. Allergies may be the cause of chronic bronchitis. Cigarette smoking appears to be a common factor and very commonly there is coexisting emphysema.
Aromatherapy aims at combating the infections, reducing the fever, easing the cough and expelling mucus. In the first stages when the coughing is dry and painful, steam inhalations is recommended. In the later stages of acute bronchitis, it is very important to clear all the mucus from the lungs.
A person suffering from acute bronchitis needs to be kept warm and rested, preferably in bed. It is important to avoid anything which may aggravate the cough such as smoke, and very dry air. Make sure that there is sufficient humidity in the room, by using a humidifier or by simply using a large bowl of hot water and adding 10 drops of eucalyptus oil.
Most adults recover from bronchitis without complications, given the above care and treatment. However the elderly and frail, babies and young children and people with heart conditions or a history of lung infections, are at a much grater risk and must always be treated under properly qualified supervision.
- A daily dosage of 3,000-10,000 mg of vitamin C plus bioflavonoids.
- The following herbs are recommended for acute bronchitis: echinacea, licorice root, white horehound, marshmallow, thyme and ginger.
- The following herbs are recommended for chronic bronchitis: sundew, licorice root, echinacea, ginger and golden seal.
- Add moisture to the air. Drink plenty of fluids.
- Chronic bronchitis sufferers should stop smoking.
Inflamed family environment. Arguments and yelling. Sometimes silent. Sometimes very cool.
The Mosby Medical Encyclopedia, Revised Edition
The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy, Salvatore Battaglia