Whooping cough

Whooping cough is an infection caused by a germ called Bordetella pertussis. It can be spread to others through droplets in air, due to coughing. Direct contact with an infected person can cause spreading of the disease. The bacterium infects the cells which lines the airways, grows rapidly and cause the symptoms.

Stages

  • Stage 1 – last 1-2 weeks. Symptoms are the same with common cold and very contagious.
  • Stage 2 – severe episodes of coughing, gasping for breath, salivate and a teary-eyed. Vomiting and exhaustion follows coughing episode. This stage last for 1-6 weeks and contagious for 2 weeks.
  • Stage 3 – coughing becomes lessened and not contagious for 2-3 weeks.

Symptoms of whooping cough

Adults

Whooping cough

Severe and rapid coughing sometimes followed by vomiting.

  • Nasal discharge
  • Severe and rapid coughing sometimes followed by vomiting
  • Intermittent sneezing
  • Fever
  • Watery eyes

Infants

  • Low fever
  • Runny nose
  • Infants below 1 year, turns blue when there is difficulties with breathing
  • Vomiting
  • Mild cough and sneezing

Treatment

  • Gargle with salt water. Fill a cup with hot water, add 2 teaspoon of salt and stir until salt it completely dissolves. Gargle this solution at least once every day to lessen the pain and the inflammation. Salt eliminates phlegm and relieves coughing. Salt is antibacterial for fast healing of the condition.
  • Install a humidifier inside the room to keep the area moist and lessen the severity of coughing. Add a few drops of essential oil to the humidifier.
  • Prescribed antibiotic to lessen the pain and the symptoms of bacterial infections.
  • A breathing tube is inserted into the throat known as intubation. The intubation is attached to a ventilator that helps with breathing by moving air in and out of the lungs.
  • Vaccinations that prevents whooping cough. DTaP and Tdap vaccines that includes diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis. Children below 7 years old are given DTaP. Booster immunization or Tdap for older children and adults for protection.
  • Prescribed antibiotics to lessen the pain and symptoms of whooping cough.
  • Drink bone broth to lessen inflammation in the respiratory system. It also boosts the immune system and the needed nutrients to fight whooping cough.
  • Get plenty of rest and fluids. Drink at least 8 glasses of water every day to prevent dehydration. Avoid performing physical activities while in the healing stage. Another alternative is drinking coconut water or herbal tea is also good for the condition.
  • Consume smaller meals to prevent vomiting while coughing.

Tips

  • Maintain personal hygiene by washing hands before eating and covering the mouth with a tissue while coughing or sneezing.
  • Perform breathing exercises such as yoga to strengthen and improve functioning of the lungs.
  • Stay dry and warm as much as possible to prevent worsening of the condition.
  • Avoid exposure to allergens such as pollen and dust to prevent further irritation on the condition.

FACT CHECK

https://www.cdc.gov/pertussis/index.html

https://www.webmd.com/children/whooping-cough-symptoms-treatment#1

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/whooping-cough/symptoms-causes/syc-20378973

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