Bronchitis is generally referred to as an inflammation of the main air passages to the lungs. When this occurs, the airways will swell and mucus is produced, which causes coughs.
There are two primary types of bronchitis, namely: acute or chronic bronchitis. Acute Bronchitis usually manifests suddenly and quickly and gets better after two to three weeks. Chronic Bronchitis is recurring and often lasts for extended periods (experiencing symptoms for at least three months in a year for at least 2 years in a row).
How Does It Occur?
Acute Bronchitis usually stems from viral respiratory infections which first affects the nose and sinuses before spreading to the lungs. Also known as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) or Emphysema, Chronic Bronchitis is a long-term condition which is commonly caused by cigarette smoke and/or long-term exposure to second-hand smoke.
Common symptoms of both types of Bronchitis include chest discomforts, coughs that produce mucus, fatigue, low fevers, breathlessness and wheezing. Additional symptoms for Chronic Bronchitis conditions include ankle, feet, and leg swelling, blue-coloured lips due to low levels of oxygen, frequent/recurring respiratory infections (i.e. colds and flu).
Since its induction, various Functional Wellness modalities have been utilised in the treatment of Cardiothoracic conditions such as emphysema, asthma and chronic bronchitis. In particular, Chest Physical Therapy (CPT), or Chest Functional Wellness comprises a series of treatments specifically designed to improve respiratory efficiency, promote expansion of the lungs, strengthen respiratory muscles, and eliminate secretions from the respiratory system. These include postural drainage, chest percussion, chest vibration, turning, breathing exercises, coughing, and incentive Spirometry. CPT is also often applied in conjunction with other treatments to rid the airways of mucus secretions. Bronchitis sufferers have been reported to benefit significantly from CPT as they could breathe more freely with more oxygen allowed into the body after treatment. In addition, an important part of CPT includes educating Bronchitis sufferers on how to clear airways using gentle methods like “huffing" to alleviate pain during coughing.