When a virus or infection is affecting the chest and head it is known as an upper respiratory infection (URI) or in many cases it is known widely as a cold. The upper respiratory system includes the nose, the throat, the mouth and the voice box. Upper respiratory symptoms can be very painful and debilitating to your everyday health and it is important to seek treatment to ensure you can effectively manage the symptoms and prevent lasting implications from the illness.
Upper Respiratory Systems
An upper respiratory virus isn’t only specific to the chest which is actually part of the lower respiratory system, but includes the head and sinuses. Usually the result of the infection is from inflammation of the body’s immune system as it tries to fight the virus. Upper respiratory symptoms can include:
- Nasal congestion.
- Nasal discharge.
- Sore and itchy throat.
- Painful to swallow.
Upper Respiratory Infection Treatment
If you are suffering from upper respiratory symptoms then Night and Day Medical can determine if your symptoms are caused by a bacterial infection and evaluate the need for antibiotics. If your symptoms are unusually severe, we can perform exploratory surgery to find the cause.
Upper respiratory infection and symptoms of bronchitis usually start developing within three days after contact with a virus. You need to be seen by a health care professional if you are suffering from a severe cough, persistent high fever, excruciating headache, chest pain, difficulty breathing, or a worsening sore throat.
It is important if you are suffering from upper respiratory symptoms to keep your body hydrated with lots of fluids, take pain relief and anti-inflammatory medication and to boost your immune system to help your body stave off infection. Smokers should be wary of smoking when suffering from an upper respiratory infection as this will worsen your condition and make effective healing difficult.
Upper Respiratory in Children
It is quite common for children to suffer from upper respiratory infections. The upper respiratory in toddlers and children can often be prone to bacteria and viruses. If your child is suffering from upper respiratory symptoms they will usually display the same symptoms as an adult although young children are likely to be clingy. The virus should run its course in 3-14 days.
Antibiotics will not work against the virus and home care and rest are an important factor for the child’s recovery. Keep your child warm and quiet in bed or on the couch with a blanket. Ensure they drink plenty of fluids such as fruit juice water and even popsicles which could help soothe their throat. Don’t be too alarmed if your child doesn’t feel like eating at this stage it is more important for them to consume fluids.
Be sure to regulate your child’s temperature every few hours and contact your doctor immediately if you see any of the following anti respiratory symptoms:
- Breathing is labored with wheezing.
- Cough has a barking sound.
- Continuous high fever for 48 hours or more.
- Skin discoloration with a grey or blue tinge.
- Sickness lasts more than 10 days.
- Refusal to take fluids for 4 hours or more.
- Acting extremely lethargic and out of sorts.
At Night and Day Medical center we can help advise all our patients on correct home care and advanced treatment for upper respiratory infections.