Symptoms of lung infection due to COVID-19
COVID-19 is a respiratory disease that can affect anyone. It enters your lungs and causes different breathing problems, from mild to chronic asthma or emphysema. When it comes to fighting infection in the body, older adults are usually weaker than their younger counterparts. They also have chronic diseases like heart failure and diabetes mellitus which can weaken them further. So, they’re more likely at risk for serious symptoms if infected with an illness or virus. It also affects people with other health conditions like heart disease or cancer. They are more susceptible and already at risk for complications due to the virus effects on their respiratory tract (lungs).
What does COVID-19 do to your lungs?
SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 is a coronavirus family member. When it gets into your body, this infection comes into contact with healthy cells producing new parts, which multiplies when a nearby cell is infected. It can infect the upper or lower part of the respiratory tract down to the alveoli. It makes irritated/inflammatory lining inflamed. It results in further progression if left untreated. It may affect organs and cause their failure (lungs), secondary bacterial pneumonia, etc.
What are the symptoms of lung infection due to COVID-19?
When the infection starts spreading in your lungs, it triggers pulmonary complications. You can experience any number of symptoms, including:
- Shortness of breath or cough
- Constant Coughing
- Chest Pain
These are the initial or mild symptoms of lung infection due to COVID-19. If left untreated or if there is a delay in treatment, this can lead to ARDS and pneumonia. These can be fatal for the infected individual.
Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS)
It is a widespread disease brought about by pathological changes in the lungs. Presently, no adequate treatment standard has been established for ARDS patients with high mortality rates.
Symptoms of ARDS include:
- Shortness of breath
- Increased respiratory rate
- Increased difficulty in breathing with acute onset.
People suffering from ARDS are at high risk of secondary infection, including pneumonia.
Pneumonia: It is a leading cause of death in COVID-19 cases. As the air sacs are damaged due to the various infections, they do not absorb enough oxygen. It can be fatal as then suddenly breathing becomes difficult and leads to respiratory distress.
How do doctors diagnose lung infections?
- Clinical history and physical examination
- Chest X-ray
- CT scan of the chest
- Sputum culture positive for the suspected organism
- Blood cultures
How to stay safe from lung infections during COVID-19?
As you know, COVID-19 is a recently discovered virus that causes severe lung infections. It’s hazardous, and so far, scientists are still developing a better vaccine and other medical treatment. Here are some precautions you can take:
- Do not touch your mouth with your hands!
A simple but often neglected rule: avoid touching your face with dirty hands! This also applies to children – avoid physical contact, if possible, since they tend to play in more contaminated places than adults. Teach them as early as possible these essential rules for their safety.
- Wash your hands thoroughly
It is an almost universal rule of hygiene. But it is also essential during the COVID-19 pandemic! If possible, use some antibacterial soap or gel to wash your hands repeatedly until they are completely clean.
- Avoid overcrowded places
Crowds can give you many kinds of infections, but this one is hazardous. Try not to stay in very crowded areas for too long – you will probably end up with a lung infection even if you don’t smoke!
- Cover your mouth and nose!
If you have a tissue with you, cover your mouth and nose with it (the best way would be to use a scarf and hold it with your hands, but tissues can do the job as well). It will increase your chances of avoiding infection 4-fold.
- Wear protective clothing
It’s no secret that people who wear masks significantly reduce their risk of getting this kind of infection (not only due to COVID-19!). Wear clothes that cover more parts of your body – this reduces COVID-19 risks as well!
- Eat healthy food
Healthy food is good for your health in general, but it also works against COVID-19! Fruits and vegetables contain some substances that can fight bacteria and viruses. You should eat more of them if you want to stay healthy.
- Avoid bad habits
Smoking causes many kinds of lung infections. It’s a hard habit to get rid of, but your life (and your lungs) depends on it! Find support from loved ones or join one of the smoking cessations groups. They will help you quit this harmful addiction!
- Consult a doctor immediately if you feel sick
If you start feeling worse each day due to a common cold, fever, or some other illness (even without fever), it is time to consult a doctor. You can easily confuse COVID-19 with many other infections. So, it’s vital not to neglect your health!
- Take preventive treatments
You can take some medicines to strengthen your immune system (e.g., zinc, vitamin C). You can also consume homeopathic preventive medicine. These medicines help build up your immunity. They are good when you want to avoid infections! Homeopathic treatment can treat mild symptoms of lung infection due to COVID-19. Patients must visit a qualified homeopathic doctor before starting any intervention on their own.
- Don’t be afraid!
Despite all the horror stories we’ve heard about COVID-19, it’s still possible to avoid this infection and lead an everyday life. You need to take proper precautions and follow simple rules like those mentioned above. So don’t be afraid. Make sure to promote awareness of this infection among your loved ones and keep yourself informed on how to deal with it!