Walking pneumonia is caused by a bacteria called mycoplasma, a kind of bacterium that casuses pneumonia. Walking pneumonia is mostly found in children between the ages of 5 and 15 and accounts for 70% of children infected by the pneumonia between the ages of 9 and 15. The symptoms of pneumonia caused by mycoplasma are not severe and the disease is not very contagious. The symptoms of pneumonia caused by mycoplasma are so mild that they are not even noticed in the early stages. The early signs of mycoplasma include slight tiredness and symptoms of cold. Other symptoms include headaches, runny noses, a slight fever and a sore throat. The symptoms of pneumonia increase in severity over a few weeks but mycoplasma infections are not difficult to treat. If the infected person is not treated, within a month there will be complications. It is best to immediately consult a physician.
Who Is Likely To Get Pneumonia?
Do you know how pneumonia is contagious. There are certain age groups who are more likely to get pneumonia. These include young children and the elderly. The reason why elderly people are more susceptible to pneumonia is because of diminished coughing and weaker immune systems. In younger children, the cause for pneumonia is due to their immature immune systems and their smaller airways.
Others who are likely to get pneumonia include those whose immune systems have been weakened by diseases such as HIV or those whose immune systems are weaker due to certain medications. Transplant recipients are also likely to come across pneumonia. Viral pneumonia spreads quickly and hospitals are highly infectious. 1% of patients in a hospital come across pneumonia each year. Cigarette smokers are also at risk because smoking causes their airways to narrow and it damages cells called cilia .
How Can Pneumonia Be Prevented?
Certain types of Pneumonia can be prevented using a vaccine called pneumococcal vaccine. However, the vaccine itself will not prevent higher forms of pneumonia or help those with low immunity. Mostly, the vaccine is a once in a lifetime vaccination but in certain cases, where the threat of pneumonia is higher than normal, more doses might be required. Consult a physician for move advice. Usually, people above the age of 65 or those having a serious heart condition or diabetes are vaccinated.
- Those who are under the risk of being exposed to pneumonia can also take pneumovax (a flu vaccine) for viral pneumonia. This vaccination is given each year as the flu for which it is effective changes each year.
- Pneumococcal vaccine is given at the same time as the vaccine for influenza.
- Eat a rich diet which includes plenty of antioxidants including dark fruits
- Do not smoke
- Exercise three times a week and do deep breathing
- Avoid excessive contact with chemicals
Keep an eye out for symptoms of pneumonia and take immediate action.
How Is Pneumonia Treated?
The specific treatment for a type of pneumonia varies from the source of the disease. Antibiotics are the norm for treating bacterial and mycoplasmic pneumonia but they are useless against viral pneumonia. It is best to act as soon as the symptoms of pneumonia show up.
- Consult a physician and take medication as prescribed.
- Use a cool mist humidifier to make breathing more easy. Never use a hot mist humidifier.
- If the fever or body pain persists, you can buy acetaminophen or ibuprofen from the local pharmacy.
- Take plenty of rest till the fever settles
- Drink six to eight glasses of water everyday