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Introduction

Almost everyone, at some time or the other, suffers from cold, a running nose, blocked nostrils, heaviness in the head and other common respiratory tract problems. By taking care of these acute respiratory problems/infections early, one could prevent more serious respiratory tract illnesses such as bronchitis, bronchial asthma, emphysema etc.

Allergic Rhinitis

Watery nasal discharge, sneezing, itching of eyes and nose, and an increased eosinophil count in the blood are common features of Allergic Rhinitis. Like the common cold, it is self–limiting (does not run a long course in one episode) in nature.

Treatment

The body’s immunity (resistance) is to be improved by cleansing the internal system with a short fast of 3 days or till the symptoms last, along with regular warm water enema early in the morning.

Asthma

There are two types of asthma patients – those who would like to know everything about asthma and the others who are irresponsibly ignorant about it. A patient who is not properly informed about the disease and its consequences has a poor prognosis.

Asthma occurs in the form of attacks of coughing, wheezing and breathlessness and is completely reversible. The duration of attack varies. Sometimes it occurs during certain seasons or with seasonal changes or might even persist throughout the year.

The specific cause of asthma is not known. It is observed that asthma begins in childhood in a majority of cases, and in most bronchial asthma sufferers there will be a family history of the allergy. The allergy may manifest itself as rhinitis, eczema or urticarial rash or asthma. If both parents suffer from some from of allergy, the chances of their child developing asthma at a young age is greater.

In some cases asthma starts at a later age and are often not associated with a specific allergic or triggering factors. Longstanding cases of bronchial asthma may result in many complications, especially if inadequately treated.

Emphysema, a permanent destruction of alveolar air spaces resulting in reduced elastic recoil of lungs, is the commonest complication. Cor pulmonale, where the heart is also involved, is another complication.

Children face the problem of stunted growth and are more prone to rib fractures. Most patients with bronchial asthma can adjust very well and continue to lead a normal life if early indications of asthma attack are taken care of and treated. Hence thorough education of the patient about the disease goes a long way in the treatment of asthma.

Treatment of bronchial asthma in an impending attack


Long Term Treatment of Acute Bronchitis/Chronic Bronchitis/Bronchial Asthma.

Besides the above–mentioned measures, the following are also to be adopted

Bronchitis

Acute Bronchitis
Inflammation of the bronchioles (small air passages or tubes in the lung) due to untreated upper respiratory infection could result in Acute Bronchitis. This causes cough with sputum, sore throat, low degree fever and heaviness in the chest.

Chronic Bronchitis
It is often termed as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). It is a progressive disease affecting the mucus membrane of the bronchi. For many, bronchitis is the result of long exposure to irritants like cotton dust, silica, smoking, recurrent viral or bacterial infection (as in recurrent acute bronchitis) and changes in temperature.

Initially, the patient will have more problems only during winter with cough, sputum, breathlessness and a feeling of tightness in the chest. This gradually increases in severity and duration resulting in persistent cough with a large quantity of sputum. The sputum will be more in the morning. Occasionally wheezing occurs along with the feeling of tightness. The sputum is a thick, sticky (mucoid) thread–like substance and may be yellow if infection is also present.

Common Cold

It is an exceedingly common respiratory infection. It is due to a virus which multiplies fast in a person whose vitality is low. The cold is, in fact, nature’s simplest mechanism of eliminating wastes accumulated in the system–popularly known as “Healing crisis”.

Recurrent Laryngitis, Tonsillitis

Laryngitis and Tonsillitis are inflammations of the larynx (wind pipe) and tonsils respectively. In both cases there is pain, sore throat, low degree fever, malaise that generally persist for a few days. Like cold and rhinitis, both conditions are self–limiting in nature.

Treatment

Sinusitis

Sinuses are paired, hollow spaces connected with the nasal passages arranged in the skull region. They are frontal, maxillary, ethmoid and sphenoid sinuses. Since they are connected to the nasal passages, any infection to the nose and throat region could spread to them. Thus, secretions accumulate in the sinuses resulting in heaviness in the head, blocked nostrils, nasal discharge, pain and tenderness at the area of involved sinus.

Treatment