How to Treat Bronchiolitis in Children


This acute infection, which can be serious, occurs when the bronchioles (the smallest airways in the lungs) become infected with a virus. It usually occurs in babies and is partic­ularly dangerous in babies who have underlying lung or heart problems. It starts as a cold and then develops into fast and noisy breathing, accompanied by coughing. They may seem to be fighting for air and begin to go blue around the mouth. Fever and drowsiness may also be symptoms. There are epi­demics during the winter every couple or so years. Hospital treatment is not always necessary, but if it is moderate to severe bronchiolitis then hospital admission may be advised as the baby may need oxygen as well as help with feeding. Sometimes artificial ventilation is necessary until breathing returns to normal. Bronchiolitis should clear up within a cou­ple of weeks.

What you can do

If you see your baby is having difficulty in breathing, is look­ing blue around the mouth and has a temperature, consult a doctor immediately or take the baby to hospital for diagnosis.

Treatment

Medical attention should be sought, but the following comple­mentary therapies may also be beneficial:

Homoeopathy

Medical help should be sought immediately for bronchiolitis, but until help arrives or you take your child to hospital, try the following: if the child is wheezy, has a blue tinge and sounds hoarse, use Carbo. veg. 30c every ten minutes for up to ten doses. If the child is very weak from the effort of breathing, use Ant. tart. 30c.

Osteopathy

To help aid recovery after bronchiolitis, an osteopath would hope to help improve the workings of the diaphragm, ribs and spine in the chest area and to work on the cranial area to clear any interference in the system that con­trols involuntary action such as the secretion of mucus. Advice may also be given on breathing, exercises and posture.

Traditional Chinese medicine

Chinese medicine sees bronchi­olitis as lung heat and phlegm heat and treatment will try to rebalance these. A range of herbs will be given during the early acute stages and others for the chronic stage, as it is important to clear the phlegm and help to stop the coughing. If the child suffers from repeated lung infections, they may be given jade screen powder from the end of summer to help prevent attacks through the winter.

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About the Author: Andrew Reinert is a health care professional who loves to share different tips on health and personal care. He is a regular contributor to MegaHowTo and lives in Canada.

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