While we are hoping to start seeing signs of spring here soon, we are certainly still in the middle of the cold, flu and upper respiratory illness season. Even though the spread of these illnesses are tending to trend downward, there is always the possibility of getting sick at any point.

Illnesses like bronchitis and pneumonia can happen at any point in the year, so knowing what each infection feels like can help you distinguish between your symptoms.

Our AFC Urgent Care Chapman Highway team shares information about the differences between these two illnesses below.

What Does Pneumonia Do?

Pneumonia is typically caused by a bacterial or viral infection that settles into your alveoli. Once your alveoli become irritated, they can fill with fluid and have trouble doing their job of transporting oxygen into your blood. This can cause you to develop a deep cough and trouble breathing.

Most people who have pneumonia can develop a fever, experience body aches and all-over body fatigue. If you suspect you have pneumonia, it is crucial to keep an eye on your symptoms as pneumonia can quickly get worse if your infection spreads. Any sort of respiratory distress is considered a medical emergency, so seek medical support right away if you feel like you can’t breathe normally.

Red Flags of a Pneumonia Infection

  • High fever that lasts for days
  • Chest pain
  • Blood in your mucus
  • Confusion
  • Difficulty breathing

How Is Bronchitis Different Than Pneumonia?

Bronchitis is also an infection, but it affects your bronchial tubes instead of your alveoli. Since your bronchial tubes are in charge of carrying air to and from your lungs, a wheezing cough is often a telltale sign of a bronchitis infection.

If your bronchitis goes untreated or the infection spreads, it can turn into a case of pneumonia. Those with a weakened immune system, people who smoke and older adults need to watch their symptoms carefully as a pneumonia infection can be dangerous or even deadly.

Signs You Have a Bronchitis Infection

  • Deep cough
  • Production of mucus
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest tightness or discomfort

Are you feeling unwell? Stop by AFC Urgent Care Chapman Highway for a quick visit today.