Home Care For People With Chronic Bronchitis

Infectious bronchitis can be caused by viral or bacterial microorganisms. It can cause severe coughing, lung congestion, shortness of breath, fever, and weakness. While the symptoms of infectious bronchitis typically resolve once the infection has cleared the body, people who have chronic bronchitis may experience debilitating symptoms indefinitely. Chronic bronchitis is often caused by years of cigarette smoking, but environmental factors such as air pollution may play a role. Here are some interventions a home care services provider can offer those affected by severe chronic bronchitis. 

Mucolytic Treatment

Bronchitis can cause thick mucus to develop in the lungs. This mucus is often difficult to expel, leaving the patient short of breath, anxious, and nauseous. The home care services provider can provide mucolytic treatments to help thin out thick mucus secretions so that they are easily expelled from the lungs.

Mucolytic treatments include the inhalation of steam from a portable device that contains mucus-thinning medications known as mucolytics. The home caregiver will also stand by and monitor the patient and intervene with supportive measures such as giving the individual ice chips or anti-nausea medications should the person become ill as a result of coughing up thick mucus secretions. 

Chest PT

Another intervention the home care services provider can offer the patient with chronic bronchitis is chest PT, also known as chest physical therapy. Often administered to cystic fibrosis patients, the chest PT provider utilizes a series of firm percussion movements with their hands to loosen secretions from the lungs.

The caregiver will ask the patient to assume various positions to assist in gravitational drainage of the lung mucus while they gently clap on their chest or back with cupped hands. This helps bring up mucus from the lungs so that a normal pattern of breathing can be established.

If thick mucus is not expectorated from the lungs, pneumonia can develop. The home care services provider will perform chest PT either before mealtimes or a couple of hours after the patient has finished their meals. Performing chest PT soon after the individual has eaten can lead to vomiting. Chest physical therapy can be done a few times a day in accordance with how the patient feels. 

If you have chronic bronchitis or another pulmonary disorder and need help at home, consider hiring a home care services provider. They can help you feel safe, cared for, and more confident living in your home while managing the challenges of lung disease. 

For more information, contact a local company, like Moonlight Home Health Care.