Pneumonia is a contagious infection with symptoms ranging from mild (cold and flu-like) to severe. The severity of your pneumonia relies on the specific bacterium that is causing it, your overall health, and your age.
You can get pneumonia if you have a bacterial, viral or fungal lung infection. A number of things can happen when the lungs are infected, including:
Your lungs expand (become inflamed)
The air sacs of the lungs get clogged with mucus and other fluids, making breathing difficult.
Read on to find out how long a fever lasts with pneumonia. Let us first discuss the causes of pneumonia and some precautions to take.
How do the lungs function?
- The primary function of your lungs is to transport oxygen into your blood and remove carbon dioxide. This occurs while inhaling.
- When you are not unwell, you breathe 12 to 20 times every minute.
- When you take a breath, air flows down the back of your throat, down your voice box, and into your windpipe (trachea).
- Your trachea divides into two airways (bronchial tubes). It connects the left lung to one bronchial tube, while the right lung connects to the other.
- The airways are open when you breathe in and out for the lungs to function properly.
- Swelling (inflammation) and mucus can make it difficult to flow air through the airways, making breathing difficult.
- This causes shortness of breath, trouble breathing, and a fatigued feeling.
A diverse range of bacteria, viruses, and fungus can cause pneumonia.
Pneumonia is typically classified based on the type of germ that causes it and the region where the person became infected.
Among the reasons are the following:
The most prevalent bacterial cause of pneumonia is Streptococcus pneumoniae.
Mycoplasma pneumoniae and other atypical bacteria: Other bacteria with distinct characteristics can cause various types of pneumonia. Mycoplasma pneumoniae (which causes “walking” pneumonia), Chlamydia pneumoniae (which causes Chlamydia pneumonia), and Legionella pneumoniae (which causes Legionnaires’ disease) are examples of these pathogens.
Pneumonia causes any virus that causes a respiratory tract infection (infections of the nose, throat, trachea [windpipe], and lungs). Cold and flu viruses (influenza) can cause pneumonia.
Fungi-caused pneumonia is the least prevalent type of pneumonia. In some places of the United States, fungus in the soil can become airborne and cause pneumonia. Valley fever is one example.
Hospital-acquired pneumonia occurs during a hospitalization for another illness. Because the person is already sick, this sort of pneumonia can be more serious, and standard medications may be less effective. People in hospitals spread drug-resistant bacteria to others, resulting in more severe and difficult-to-treat pneumonia cases. People who use breathing equipment (ventilators) are more likely to have hospital-acquired pneumonia.
Long-term care facility-acquired pneumonia:
Long-term care facility-acquired pneumonia occurs in nursing homes or outpatient, extended-stay clinics. In this situation, as in hospitalized patients, drug-resistant microorganisms exist.
Another type of pneumonia is aspiration pneumonia. An aspiration is when solid foods and other liquids get into the trachea (windpipe) and go into the lungs instead of the esophagus and stomach. If you are unable to cough up these things, they will linger in your lung tissue and may become infected, resulting in pneumonia.
How long does fever last : Pneumonia
Mild pneumonia is usually treatable at home with rest, antibiotics (if caused by a bacterial infection), and plenty of fluids. Severe instances may necessitate hospitalization.
Unless otherwise directed by a healthcare expert, you should always finish a prescribed course of antibiotics, even if you feel better.
If you stop taking an antibiotic in the middle of a course, the bacteria may become resistant to it. When you start taking medicine, your symptoms should progressively improve.
However, how quickly they improve will be determined by the severity of your pneumonia.
As a general rule of thumb, after:
- 1 week – high temperature should have subsided 4 weeks – chest pain and mucus production should have decreased significantly
- 6 weeks – Coughing and shortness of breath should be greatly reduced.
- 3 months – most symptoms should have subsided, but you may still be exhausted (fatigue)
- 6 months – most folks will feel normal again.
Although most occurrences of pneumonia are bacterial and cannot be communicated from person to person, maintaining excellent hygiene standards will help prevent germs from spreading.
For instance, you should:
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or a cloth when you cough or sneeze to prevent the spread of germs.
- Throw away used tissues as soon as possible since germs can survive for several hours after they leave your nose or mouth.
- Wash your hands on a frequent basis to avoid spreading germs to other persons or objects.
- A healthy lifestyle can also aid in the prevention of pneumonia. For example, you should quit smoking because it harms your lungs and increases your risk of infection.
- Excessive and long-term alcohol consumption also impairs your lungs’ natural defenses against infection, making you more susceptible to pneumonia.
Usually, you can treat mild pneumonia at home by:
- Getting enough sleep
- Antibiotics if the pneumonia is likely caused by a bacteria.
- Drinking a lot of water
As long as you don’t have any other health problems, you should be able to get better quickly with treatment, but your cough may last for a while.
For people who are at risk for pneumonia, it can be very bad and they may need to go to the hospital to get better.
Sometimes, it can be hard to tell if someone has pneumonia because the symptoms can be so different, and they can also be very similar to those of a cold or the flu.
Make sure to get your pneumonia treated if your fever lasts more than a week.
To figure out if you have pneumonia and what kind of germ is making you sick, your doctor will ask you about your medical history, do a physical exam, and run some tests.