Bronchitis—also known as a chest cold—occurs when the airways in your lungs swell and produce
mucus that makes you cough.
The same viruses that cause colds and flu can cause bronchitis. In fact, bronchitis often occurs after you
have a cold or flu-like illness. And, like colds and flu, bronchitis can be very contagious.
Bronchitis symptoms include:
- Coughing with or without mucus.
- Soreness in your chest.
- Feeling tired (fatigue).
- Mild headache.
- Mild body aches.
- Sore throat.
When to seek medical care
Call your healthcare provider or come to Saratoga Hospital Urgent Care – Wilton if you have:
- Temperature of 100.4° or higher.
- Cough with bloody mucus.
- Shortness of breath or trouble breathing.
- Symptoms that last more than three weeks.
- Repeated episodes of bronchitis.
- You have other symptoms that seem unusual for a cold.
- You have a chronic health condition, like heart or lung disease.
How to ease symptoms
- You can take some simple steps to feel better while you have bronchitis.
- Drink plenty of fluids.
- Get lots of rest.
- If you have asthma or another chronic lung condition, use your inhaler.
- If you have a fever, take acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
- Take an expectorant to loosen mucus.
- Breathe moist air by using a humidifier or steaming up the bathroom.
Remember: For serious and life-threatening injuries or illnesses, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency department.