Inhaled steroids or beta blockers are conventional treatment, and while it’s a good idea to keep those on hand for emergencies, naturopathic medicine can help asthmatics reduce the need to use their puffers.
Bronchitis is an inflammation of the bronchial tubes which carry air between your windpipe and your lungs. This inflammation can be painful, and so can the cough that usually comes with it. Acute bronchitis is usually caused by a viral infection, meaning antibiotics won’t help. In rare cases, it’s caused by a bacterial infection, and acute bronchitis may also be a reaction to tobacco smoke or chemicals in the air.
Signs of chronic bronchitis include a cough with mucus that is around for most days of a given month, for at least three months. It’s usually a result of smoking. Most people with chronic bronchitis also have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Coughs may be part of a cold or flu, bronchitis, or other viral infection. Cough syrups work to suppress coughing, and can be a good short-term strategy. For natural approaches, there are herbs like mullein and licorice that work well to help soothe the lungs and reduce coughing. If a cough is around for a long time, deeper immune support may be necessary to help clear it up. Excessive coughing can make it hard to sleep, and sleep is an important part of healing!
Emphysema is a weakening of the air sacs in your lungs, making it hard to breathe. Like chronic bronchitis, emphysema is part of COPD, and the most common cause of emphysema is smoking tobacco. With emphysema, it gets harder to exhale, so there is less room to take in new oxygen with each breath.