Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs that can range from being quite minor to be so serious that a person needs to be hospitalised.
This condition arises when the air sacs in your lungs, which your doctor will refer to as the alveoli, become filled with fluid or pus as a result of an infection. This can make it difficult for you to take in enough oxygen through your breath so that it can enter your bloodstream.
This lung infection is not picky about who it affects. But children smaller than 2 years old and adults older than 65 years old are at a greater threat. This is due to the fact that their immune systems may not be powerful enough to fight off the infection.
Pneumonia can affect either one or both of a person’s lungs. It’s also possible to have it without being aware of it. The medical community refers to the condition as “walking pneumonia.” Bacteria, viruses, and fungi are all potential culprits in this case. If you have pneumonia and it was caused by bacteria or a virus, you could potentially pass it on to another person.
In addition to your lifestyle, factors such as smoking cigarettes and consuming an excessive amount of alcohol might increase your risk of developing pneumonia.
Pneumonia’s Signs and Symptoms
Your symptoms can be different depending on the underlying cause of your pneumonia, your age, and your general state of health. In most cases, the process takes several days to complete.
The following are some of the common symptoms of pneumonia:
Along with these symptoms, older adults and persons with weakened immune systems may also experience confusion, changes in mental awareness, or a lower-than-usual body temperature. In addition, they may be more susceptible to developing an infection.
It is possible that newborns and infants will show no symptoms of illness. They could also have a cough, a temperature, and appear agitated or exhausted in addition to throwing up.
Call your doctor immediately if you get a new cough, fever, or shortness of breath and inquire about the possibility that you have COVID-19. Pneumonia is another potential complication of illness brought on by the newly discovered coronavirus.
Pneumonia’s Root Causes:
Bacteria, viruses, or fungus can cause pneumonia.
The term “ventilator-associated pneumonia” refers to a condition that can affect patients who have contracted an infection while being treated with a ventilator, which is a machine that assists patients in breathing.
It is referred to as “hospital-acquired pneumonia” when a patient develops pneumonia while they are staying in a hospital but are not connected to a ventilator. However, the majority of patients suffer from “community-acquired pneumonia,” which indicates that they did not contract the illness while in a medical facility.
Your physician will begin by asking you questions about your symptoms as well as your medical history. These questions may include whether or not you smoke cigarettes and whether or not you have been in close proximity to sick people at home, school, or work. After that, they will pay attention to your lungs. It is possible that as you breathe in, they will hear sounds like cracking, bubbling, or rumbling if you have pneumonia.
If your physician suspects that you have pneumonia, they will most likely perform a battery of tests on you, including the following:
If you first experienced your symptoms while you were in the hospital or if you have other health issues, your doctor may decide to perform further tests on you, including the following:
Complications related to pneumonia can include the following:
Your physician will be able to advise you on the treatment that is most appropriate for you.
If you have bacterial pneumonia, you’ll need antibiotics. Take every dose of the medication that your doctor prescribes for you, even if you begin to feel better before the full course of treatment has been completed.
Antibiotic treatment is ineffective against viral pneumonia, though. In order to bring down your temperature, you will need to get plenty of rest, drink a lot of fluids, and take some medicine.
Your doctor may decide to admit you to the hospital if your symptoms are particularly severe or if you have any additional problems that put you at an increased risk of developing complications. During your stay at the clinic, your physician will most likely administer fluids or antibiotics to you through an IV tube. It’s possible that you’ll require oxygen therapy or other breathing treatments.
Recovery from any form of pneumonia takes a significant amount of time. You’re going to require a lot of sleep for this. You might need to take a week off from your typical activities, and even then, you might feel exhausted for the next thirty days.