Bronchiolitis – What is Bronchiolitis – Bronchiolitis treatment
Bronchiolitis is an inflammation of the bronchioles, the smallest airways in the lungs. Usually appears in children less than two years, majority between three and six months, because their small airways can block much easily with an inflammation. Symptoms are coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath. These make feeding difficult in infants.
It is more common in boys than girls and children who have not been breastfed or those living in large groups or exposed to cigarette smoke. Bronchiolitis is usually caused by a respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) that produces inflammation in the lower respiratory tract, but can also be caused by other type of viruses such as rhinovirus, influenza and pneumovirus.
Bronchiolitis is usually a mild illness. However, some infants can be at risk for a more severe reaction, requiring hospitalization, especially premature infants, those with a weakened immune system or prior chronic heart or lung disease.
The signs and symptoms starts as a common cold, with nasal congestion, stuffiness, mild cough, runny nose and fever but will develop in about a day or two, into much worsening cough and wheezing. Watch for the following symptoms and proceed with urgent medical care if your child have:
– elaborated breathing, rapid and shallow with increased heartbeat rate
– retraction as the child inhales in areas of ribs, between and below, and neck
– bluish nails and lips
– fatigue or lethargy and poor appetite
Kids who easily develop bronchiolitis are found to be more likely to develop asthma later in life, although there is not a clear link between the two. If their airways becomes sensitive and the inflammation persists for long time, these are signs to watch. The seashore aerosol will do wonders here; the salt aerosol is able to restore and desensitize the respiratory system.
Home salt therapy is very helpful in bronchiolitis because the salt particles are very tiny and can travel to bronchiole and alveoli, and can offer long enough exposure to eliminate chronic inflammation. It can be easily administered to infants by breathing the salt aerosol from the indoor air. The salt aerosol will reduce inflammation in the bronchioles, clear mucus and open the airways. Place an extra pillow under head creating an angle. In babies, the best way is to place it under the mattress to create a smooth slope. This will help with nasal congestion and also prevent ear infection.