All You Need to Know About Pneumonia

Pneumonia is a prevalent infectious illness that can affect people of any age group. Its symptoms include breathing difficulties, high fever, and severe cough, which can lead to hospitalization and even dependence on a ventilator. This disease is particularly rampant during the winter months and poses a threat to many individuals. To help you safeguard yourself during this cold season, we have compiled all the necessary information about pneumonia, including its symptoms, causes, natural remedies, and preventative measures.

What are the symptoms of pneumonia?

 Symptoms of the disease may appear quickly, but in some cases - similar to other respiratory diseases (such as the novel coronavirus) - they take longer to develop and manifest. The speed at which they appear depends to a large extent on the scope and severity of the inflammation, its causes, and the general health of the sick person. Among the common symptoms are:

  • A general feeling of tiredness

  • Fever

  • Difficulty breathing
  • A cough
  • Fast respiration
  • Chills
  • Chest pain.

In cases of severe illness, all the symptoms mentioned could occur simultaneously. However, in the case of mild inflammation, the primary symptoms will be coughing and high fever. These symptoms are a consequence of the immune system's hard work in battling inflammation. This takes a toll on the body's energy levels and restricts airflow to the tissues, resulting in breathing difficulties and fatigue. It's important to note that these symptoms are not to be taken lightly!

As inflammation worsens, the body's ability to absorb oxygen becomes greatly reduced, which can result in serious complications like pulmonary embolism, pleural effusion, hypoxemia (low oxygen levels in your blood), and hypoxia (low oxygen levels in the tissues). To effectively treat these conditions, medical attention is necessary for proper assessment and the use of antibiotics to eradicate bacterial infections.

The causes of pneumonia according to age groups

Pneumonia can be caused by more than 100 different pathogens in humans, and the most common ones often vary depending on factors such as age. Babies, children, and adults may be infected with different pathogens, and unborn babies can also contract pneumonia from contaminated amniotic fluid or infections in the uterus. As individuals grow older and encounter new microorganisms, the pathogens they are susceptible to change. By the age of 5, the pathogens that children are susceptible to become more similar to those of adults.

Pneumonia can be caused by a variety of factors in adults, with bacteria being the most common pathogen. Other pathogens, such as viruses like Covid-19 and SARS, account for about 20% of pneumonia cases. Those with underlying health conditions or risk factors, such as chronic lung diseases or weakened immune systems, are more likely to contract the infection. They may experience more severe symptoms. Diagnosis, treatment, and recovery from pneumonia are also significant considerations.

Diagnosis and treatment

The diagnosis of inflammation involves multiple steps such as a doctor's questioning about symptoms, physical examination, chest x-rays, and blood tests to confirm the presence of inflammation. If the patient is diagnosed with pneumonia, antibiotics are usually given for a short period, orally or by injection, to eliminate the causative pathogen and prevent complications. In some cases, the patient may need to stay in the hospital for observation, and in severe cases, they may require ventilator support for breathing difficulties. It is imperative to note that the ventilator only provides oxygen to the lungs and is not a treatment for the disease.
The recovery time from pneumonia varies according to the extent of the disease and its severity - mild patients who did not need hospitalization and experienced only a few symptoms are expected to recover in most cases after 5 days, but those who suffer from severe inflammation and are required to be hospitalized and connected to a ventilator are expected to experience a longer recovery period that may even reach several weeks.

What are the natural ways to relieve symptoms of pneumonia?

Cough relief

In a study conducted in 2011, it was found that plants such as spearmint and eucalyptus can relieve the throat of people suffering from upper respiratory infections. These plants, which can be consumed in hot tea, help to efficiently break down mucus congestion in the lungs and relieve the inflammation caused by the disease. Also, in a review from 2018, it was discovered that the seeds of Greek fenugreek (fenugreek) are also able to effectively break down mucus, and the preparation of herbal tea based on ground fenugreek is able to reduce coughing.

Relief from FEVER

When we experience a high fever, it is very necessary to drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration since our body tends to release a lot of fluids. It is also recommended to take a lukewarm bath or shower instead of a cold one, as it may worsen the chills and make us feel uncomfortable. Taking a lukewarm shower will help the body gradually and healthily lower its temperature, making it easier to manage sickness.


Two ways to ease breathing

1. A study conducted at the University of Cambridge found that using a fan or electric hand fan directly on the face or legs can decrease the sensation of breathing difficulties among the participants.
2. According to research, a small amount of caffeine can have positive effects on the respiratory tract by functioning similarly to theophylline (a medication used to treat airway blockages and asthma). The benefits of caffeine can last for up to four hours and alleviate symptoms of pulmonary diseases. 

Relieving chest pain

Turmeric tea has also been found to have anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce pain, potentially including chest pain. Additionally, turmeric contains antioxidants and antimicrobial properties that are especially useful in preventing pneumonia, which is often caused by exposure to bacteria.

Can pneumonia be prevented?

The bacteria that cause pneumonia are highly likely to occur in the environment, which makes it difficult to avoid. However, it has been found that following a healthy lifestyle may offer some protection and lower the risk of developing a severe illness.
1. A healthy lifestyle includes avoiding smoking as it is one of the main contributors to pneumonia. Not only does it harm the smoker, but it also puts those around them at risk of respiratory infections. Therefore, quitting smoking is crucial for improving one's health and protecting others.
2. Regular physical activity is a crucial aspect of a healthy lifestyle, recommended for individuals of all ages. Engaging in aerobic or cardio exercises like running, walking, cycling, or swimming can enhance oxygen consumption and elevate the heart rate. This leads to enhanced lung, heart, and immune system function.


3. A wholesome and diverse diet that includes plant-based foods, complex carbohydrates, and dietary fiber while limiting sodium and sugar intake can assist in building a stronger body and fighting off illnesses.

4. When it comes to preventing the spread of bacteria from contaminated areas, personal hygiene plays a crucial role. To avoid spreading bacteria, it's important to sneeze into a handkerchief instead of the air and regularly wash your hands, especially after coming into contact with contaminated areas.


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