It is the time of year that people suffer from bad colds or the flu. Be aware that it’s easy for the infection that’s already in the lungs to progress to the next level…. pneumonia… because the body is already fighting the germs, bacteria, viruses, etc.1 But, is it walking pneumonia or pneumonia?
Walking pneumonia is pretty much what it implies…an infection of the lungs, but to a lesser degree than pneumonia. Someone with walking pneumonia can still function on a day-to-day level but will experience a cough without much mucus, a low grade fever (under 101 degrees), and an overall feeling of fatigue.
The doctor or healthcare provider will decide if the underlying cause is either from a virus or bacteria in order to prescribe the proper treatment. Bed rest and a little cough syrup are often part of the treatment plan as well.
Be on the lookout for the top symptoms if pneumonia is suspected. These include a cough, with perhaps green-tinged mucus, and chest pains after a coughing spell, a fever over 101, feeling short of breath and/or a fast heartbeat, and a feeling of weakness and fatigue. Other symptoms may also include vomiting, nausea, or diarrhea.
In addition, the CDC recommends a pneumonia shot for everyone age 65 and over.2 This is especially true if the medical history includes heart and lung issues, like COPD, and if someone is a smoker. Under these circumstances, the pneumonia shot, which is given every 5 years, is a good preventative treatment. It may not keep someone from contracting the disease, but it will lessen the severity.
If someone is down with flu or pneumonia this season, remember home health services for medical care at home that can keep them safe and comfortable.
Pneumonia. Available from: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pneumonia/symptoms-causes/syc-20354204
Walking Pneumonia: What Does it Mean? Available from: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pneumonia/expert-answers/walking-pneumonia/faq-20058530#:~:text=Walking%20pneumonia%20is%20an%20informal,you%20are%20out%20walking%20around.