Common Conditions

Is Bronchitis Contagious? And Other Questions

Is acute bronchitis contagious? Yes. The majority of the time, it’s caused by a virus, like the flu virus. But, many various viruses — all of which are highly contagious — may trigger acute bronchitis.


Viruses that are spread mostly from one person to another by droplets generated as a sick person sneezes, coughs, or talks and you actually inhale the droplets. In addition, viruses might spread through touching an infected object. That occurs when you come into contact with something that has the virus on it then touch your nose, eyes, or mouth.


To decrease your risk of catching a virus that may lead to bronchitis:


• Avoid close proximity with those with the flu or another respiratory sickness

• Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer or frequently wash your hands

• Avoid touching the mouth, nose, and eyes

• Get a flu shot on an annual basis


Folks with asthma or chronic bronchitis occasionally develop acute bronchitis. Within these instances, acute bronchitis is more than likely a complication of the present condition. This kind of bronchitis isn’t caused by an infectious virus; therefore, it is less likely to be contagious.


Acute bronchitis symptoms

The acute bronchitis symptoms may involve:


• Body aches

• Chills

• Fever

• Sore throat

• Wheezing

• Shortness of breath

• Cough which brings up green, yellow, or clear mucus

• Chest tightness or congestion 


A cough may last for several weeks or even more. It occurs because your bronchial tubes take quite some time to heal. Lasting coughs might be a sign of another issue, like pneumonia or asthma.


Acute bronchitis: What causes it?

Acute bronchitis is more than oftentimes caused by a contagious virus. The exact same viruses which trigger colds may cause acute bronchitis. Firstly, the virus impacts your throat, sinuses, and nose. Next, the infection heads to the lining of your bronchial tubes. As the body fights off the virus, swelling happens and mucus is generated.


It’s possible to get a virus by skin contact or from breathing it in. You’re at greater risk of obtaining the virus if you have close proximity with somebody with acute bronchitis or a cold.


Lesser-known acute bronchitis causes include:


• Fungal or bacterial infections.

• Exposure to irritants, like fumes, dust, or smoke. You’re at higher risk if the bronchial tubes already possess damage.

• Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), which leads to heartburn. It’s possible to obtain acute bronchitis as stomach acid seeps into your bronchial tubes.


Is difficulty breathing an indication of asthma?

Difficulty breathing may be an indication of asthma. For most folks, the main symptoms and signs of asthma include shortness of breath, wheezing, chest tightness, and excess mucus. For other people, a chronic cough which comes and goes periodically might be the primary or only asthma symptoms.


These types of symptoms also can be caused by specific medicines and other conditions, which includes respiratory infections, emphysema, hay fever, bronchitis, acid reflux, as well as cardiovascular disease.


Asthma is more than likely to be causing the bronchitis symptoms if:


• You experience episodes of wheezing, coughing, and shortness of breath which last more than a couple of weeks and come and go.

• Symptoms tend to be caused by certain things, like allergy-causing substances, exercise, cold air, or pollutants like cigarette smoke, engine exhaust, or chemical fumes.

• You are an adult who experienced asthma-like or asthma symptoms as a kid.

• You experience hay fever or additional allergies, or there are family members with asthma or allergies.


Visit your physician if you experience a cough or additional respiratory symptoms which last more than a couple of weeks. Even if it is not asthma, it might be something that requires treatment. 


For more information on bronchitis contact Bass Medical today!