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What Is Pneumonia?

Pneumonia affects millions of Americans in a given year, with some 1 million Americans seeking care in a hospital for pneumonia symptoms. But how much do you really know about the condition?

Our team at AFC Urgent Care Levittown wants to offer you some details about the condition, including how it is diagnosed and treated. Read on as we take a look.

How Is Pneumonia Diagnosed?

If you think you may have pneumonia, seek medical attention. Your doctor will thoroughly review your symptoms and conduct a physical exam, specifically paying attention to respiratory system-related symptoms.

If he or she thinks you may have pneumonia, you'll likely undergo a chest X-ray to look for inflammation and bloodwork to check your blood cell count and uncover whether your infection is viral or bacterial. This will determine how your illness will be most effectively treated.

Treatment for Pneumonia

  • Take an antibiotic, if one is prescribed for a bacterial infection.
  • Try anti-inflammatory drugs or acetaminophen to alleviate fever and pain.
  • Drink plenty of fluids.
  • Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air.
  • Get lots of rest, including quality sleep.

How Can You Prevent Pneumonia?

Your best defense against pneumonia is actually to get an annual flu shot. That's because pneumonia is often a complication of the flu—a secondary bacterial infection in most cases.

If you're over age 65, you can also receive a dose of the pneumonia vaccine. Other ways to protect yourself include washing your hands regularly, disinfecting commonly touched surfaces, getting plenty of rest, exercising often and eating a balanced diet.

Foods That Can Help Speed Recovery of Pneumonia

  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Beans
  • White meat
  • Cold water fish like salmon and sardines

Do you think you might have pneumonia? Visit AFC Urgent Care Levittown today for a medical exam. No appointment is necessary!