How Do I Know If My Chest Infection Is Viral Or Bacterial?

What illnesses do you need antibiotics for?

Chest Cold (Acute Bronchitis)Common Cold.Ear Infection.Flu (Influenza)Sinus Infection (Sinusitis)Skin Infections.Sore Throat.Urinary Tract Infection..

What does pneumonia feel like in chest?

The signs and symptoms of pneumonia may include: Cough, which may produce greenish, yellow or even bloody mucus. Fever, sweating and shaking chills. … Sharp or stabbing chest pain that gets worse when you breathe deeply or cough.

What is the fastest way to get rid of a upper respiratory infection?

How is acute upper respiratory infection treated?Nasal decongestants can improve breathing. … Steam inhalation and gargling with salt water are a safe way to get relief from URI symptoms.Analgesics like acetaminophen and NSAIDs can help reduce fever, aches, and pains.

When should I be concerned about a cough?

Most coughs will resolve without treatment in two to three weeks. But if your cough lasts longer than three weeks, or you have other worrying symptoms, you should see a doctor. … A cough that lasts less than three weeks is usually the result of a common virus, like the cold or flu, and is rarely a cause for concern.

Do you need antibiotics for a chest infection?

Antibiotics are only used to treat bacterial chest infections. They’re not used for treating viral chest infections, such as flu or viral bronchitis, because they do not work for this type of infection.

Is my chest infection viral or bacterial?

A chest infection is an infection of the lungs or airways. The main types of chest infection are bronchitis and pneumonia. Most bronchitis cases are caused by viruses, whereas most pneumonia cases are due to bacteria. These infections are usually spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

What happens when you get a viral infection?

Symptoms of the viral illness occur as a result of cell damage, tissue destruction, and the associated immune response. Certain viruses — like the ones that cause chickenpox and cold sores — may be inactive or “latent” after the initial infection. For example, you may have a cold sore that erupts and then heals.

When should you go to doctors with chest infection?

If you develop fast breathing, shortness of breath, or chest pains. If you cough up blood or if your phlegm becomes dark or rusty-coloured. If you become drowsy or confused. If a cough lasts for longer than 3-4 weeks.

How do you know if it’s bacterial or viral infection?

The symptoms of a bacterial infection and a virus are often very similar—fever, muscle aches, cough, and sore throat—but they require different treatments….Make an appointment if you have:Symptoms that last more than 10 days.Recurring fevers.Shortness of breath.Excessive yellow or green mucus.

What is the fastest way to get rid of a viral infection?

But you can find relief faster with these smart moves.Take it easy. When you’re sick, your body works hard to fight off that infection. … Go to bed. Curling up on the couch helps, but don’t stay up late watching TV. … Drink up. … Gargle with salt water. … Sip a hot beverage. … Have a spoonful of honey.

How do you get rid of a viral infection?

For most viral infections, treatments can only help with symptoms while you wait for your immune system to fight off the virus. Antibiotics do not work for viral infections. There are antiviral medicines to treat some viral infections. Vaccines can help prevent you from getting many viral diseases.

What is the fastest way to get mucus out of your lungs?

Taking the following actions can help to eliminate excess mucus and phlegm:Keeping the air moist. … Drinking plenty of fluids. … Applying a warm, wet washcloth to the face. … Keeping the head elevated. … Not suppressing a cough. … Discreetly getting rid of phlegm. … Using a saline nasal spray or rinse. … Gargling with salt water.More items…

How do I know if I need antibiotics?

Your doctor may prescribe antibiotics if the symptoms are severe and include high fever along with nasal drainage and a productive cough. Antibiotics may also be necessary if you feel better after a few days and then your symptoms return or if the infection lasts more than a week.

How long do viral infections last?

The effects will last as long as the virus affects the body. Most viral infections last from several days to 2 weeks.

What is a natural antibiotic?

Option 1: Honey Honey is one the oldest known antibiotics, tracing back to ancient times. Egyptians frequently used honey as a natural antibiotic and skin protectant. Honey contains hydrogen peroxide , which may account for some of its antibacterial properties.

How can I get antibiotics without going to the doctor?

Self-medication is when you take (or want to take) antibiotics without first consulting a medical doctor by:using leftover antibiotics from previous treatments; or,getting antibiotics at the pharmacy without a prescription.

How do I know if I have bronchitis or a cold?

If you have acute bronchitis, you might have cold symptoms, such as a mild headache or body aches. While these symptoms usually improve in about a week, you may have a nagging cough that lingers for several weeks. … If you have chronic bronchitis, you’re likely to have periods when your cough or other symptoms worsen.

How long does a chest infection last without antibiotics?

Most chest infection symptoms typically go away within 7 to 10 days, although a cough can last up to three weeks. See your doctor if your symptoms haven’t improved or have gotten worse in this time.