Coughs, Colds, Sneezes and Wheezes
Coughs, sneezes and wheezes are all signs of various respiratory infections – that is, infections of the nose, throat, airways and lungs. These infections can be caused by bacteria or viruses. Although many people tend to think of viral infections as being less ‘serious’ than bacterial infections, this is not necessarily so. Many viral illnesses can be very serious. In addition, we have antibiotics to kill most bacteria. In contrast, anti-viral medications are only in the early stages of development and are not readily available to the general public (except in a few particular cases, such as for herpes infections). This chapter discusses conditions that cause ‘coughs, colds, sneezes and wheezes,’ the signs and symptoms and treatment of various respiratory infections.
- Causes of respiratory infections
- Common colds
- Croup, epiglottitis and whooping cough