Bronchitis in toddlers most often begins as a respiratory infection and continues to develop in the throat, nose and airways of the child. It is more prevalent in children who are exposed to second-hand smoke, chemical vapor and polluted air. Bronchitis can last for up to 2 weeks.
Bronchitis develops when the bronchial tubes become swollen. As air passes to and from the lungs, heavy mucus develops, blocking the airway.
Continuous hacking, which can result in gagging and vomiting; dry or wet cough, green or yellow thick mucus; wheezing; upper chest pain; and a fever of 100 degrees or more are all symptoms of bronchitis in toddlers.
When a toddler has acute bronchitis, a chest X-ray and a blood test is usually done. This is to determine if something more serious, like pneumonia, is causing the symptoms.
Bronchitis normally goes away without treatment, but there are measures that can be taken to make the child more comfortable. Place a humidifier in the child's room, provide liquids for the child at all times, do not allow anyone to smoke around the child, and a prescribed inhaler helps with the wheezing and tightness in the chest.
Most toddlers recover completely from bronchitis with no side effects.