Bronchitis in Children: Symptoms & Treatment

When a cold leads to the addition of a cough, child could be developing bronchitis, a respiratory condition where the lining the trachea and the bronchial tubes leading to the lungs and become inflamed, producing an abnormal amount of mucus. The development of a cough is the first in a line of symptoms of bronchitis in children.

How Bronchitis Occurs

As mentioned above, bronchitis often manifests itself on the tail end of a cold and therefore is most likely caused by a virus rather than bacteria. When a viral infection is the cause of bronchitis, antibiotics do not help this condition. In children, symptoms of bronchitis present themselves after a cold or even the flu and can even be the result of the measles or whooping cough.

Prolonged exposure to secondhand smoke from cigarettes and other tobacco products can lower the immune system of children, inviting more colds, thus inviting bronchitis as well. Heavy allergens in the air and even air pollution can be contributing factors of this respiratory illness.

Symptoms of Bronchitis in Children

Symptoms of bronchitis in children typically start with the common cold, so sore throat, coughing, mild fever and runny nose are all signs. You will also notice that with the cough that accompanies a cold, it may start off dry but as it turns moist, it could be a sure sign of bronchitis developing.

Other symptoms of bronchitis in children include shortness of breath and even some wheezing. Keep in mind however that asthma also shares these symptoms so only a doctor using a stethoscope to listen to the child’s lungs can make an accurate diagnosis.

Treatment and Recovery for Children with Bronchitis

With the onset of symptoms of bronchitis in children, you should immediately make an appointment with the doctor to determine that bronchitis is indeed the culprit. In many cases, a virus is the cause so you should do what you can to ease the symptoms of bronchitis in children to make them more comfortable, which in turn speeds up the recovery process.

Fluids such as water, juice and warm soup are all great at soothing the cough as well as thinning the mucus secretions so that they are easier to expel. Occasionally, body aches and mild fever could occur so a children’s pain reliever could be administered.

Steam from a shower or vaporizer also eases the symptoms of bronchitis in children and can be administered several times a day as needed.

For the most part, bronchitis clears up within five days to a week. However, if the symptoms of bronchitis in children last longer or recur frequently, a doctor can determine if there is an underlying condition which could be contributing to the problem.

5 Responses to Bronchitis in Children: Symptoms & Treatment

  1. Should a three-month old child be given antibiotics to cure bronchitis?

  2. Health Advisor

    To Allen: Thanks for asking. Antibiotics should always be considered case by case, depending on what other options have been used (or yet to be used), because antibiotic can interfere with the natural immunity development within the baby. But you must really check this with doctor who is physically seeing the baby. That will be the best decision.

  3. Buna ziua,fetita mea are 1 an si 9luni si de 2 zile am observat ca tuseste, astazi am dus-o la medic si a diagnosticat-o cu bronsita si un usor unceput de otita la o ureche ( acest diagnostic de la ureche ia mai fost dat si acum 3luni) pediatra spune ca are o sensibilitate la urechea dreapta. ce vrea sa insemne asta? tratamentul este amoxil 3,5cc la 11 kg. si ventolin 2 cc. Sunt putin ingrijorata ca stiu ca o data aparuta bronsita , sunt mai sensibili sa reapara :(si vroiam sa va intreb daca tratamentul este unul greu ptr organismul ei 🙁

  4. Hi.my 18 months old boy is suffering from bronchitis.he cant sleep during the day time and even during the night time.whatever I give him to eat or drink he vomitted. I saw my GP. Be gave my amoxil 3 times and ventoline 4 times a day.he is not getting better.what to do.waiting for your reply.

    • Dear Saleha, I am sorry for my late reply. As a parent, its difficult to deal with Bronchitis in Children. The medication given by your GP/doctor seems to be okay. Best Wishes.

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