Because viruses survive better in cold temperatures, influenza, the common cold, and other viral infections tend to spread like wildfire every year during the autumn and winter seasons. These respiratory diseases can develop into bronchitis if they worsen and aren’t treated.
Another possible result is pneumonia – which can develop from a bacterial, viral, or fungal infection. This can be a serious condition among young children and the elderly, as well as those with weak immune systems.
Let’s talk about what treatments are best for the various types of upper respiratory infections, and who you can trust to give the right treatment.
What Are the Treatments for Respiratory Infections?
There are plenty of treatments for the flu, pneumonia, and other upper respiratory infections. These treatments include:
If you have a bacterial infection, such as pneumonia, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics. You should always fully complete any antibiotic treatment course prescribed to you, even if you start to feel better midway into the course. If you stop taking antibiotics prematurely, any surviving bacteria will develop resistance and could restart the infection. In this case, you will need to take a different medicine to cure the disease in the future.
Viral infections, on the other hand, do not respond to antibiotic treatments – which is one of the main reasons why it is so important to get the annual flu shot to reduce your risk of illness and complications from the flu. If you do happen to get the flu, your doctor may prescribe an antiviral medication, such as Tamiflu, Relenza, or Xofluza, to lessen your symptoms as you heal.
Over-the-counter pain medications can help reduce pain and discomfort while you recover from a respiratory infection. Decongestants can clear up your sinuses and allow you to breathe more easily. Expectorants and cough suppressants can reduce coughing.
In most cases of respiratory infections, your immune system is capable of clearing the infection from your body naturally. The symptoms you feel, such as fatigue and fever, are signs that your body is working hard to fight the infection. All you need to do is rest and let your body’s immune system do its job.
Make sure to get enough sleep at night, and take naps during the day until you get better. If you don’t get enough sleep while you recover, you risk weakening your body’s defenses and giving the infection the upper hand. Lack of sleep results in more intense symptoms and a longer duration of the illness.
Indulge in drinking plenty of water, tea, Gatorade, and your favorite soups to stay well-hydrated while your body fights off the respiratory infection. Fever, coughing, sweating, and nasal discharge all increase your body’s demand for extra fluids. Hot soups have the added advantage of temporarily easing symptoms like a stuffy nose or sore throat.
Your doctor can determine whether your respiratory infection is mild or something more severe. Based on this information, they can recommend appropriate antibiotics, antiviral treatments, or other necessary medications. In the case of pneumonia, your doctor will decide if you need hospitalization.
Upper Respiratory Infection Treatment in Forth Worth, Texas
If you are looking for a comprehensive healthcare provider that does it all, Texas Medical Institute is here for you. We hope to be your go-to primary care provider for everything from annual checkups and flu shots to injury treatment.
To schedule an appointment, call our friendly team today at (817) 615-8633. You can also request an appointment online. We look forward to serving you.