When should I see my healthcare provider?

It is often difficult to know whether you have a cold, bronchitis, or pneumonia because symptoms are similar. See your healthcare provider if you have:

  • A cold that lasts more than two to three weeks.
  • A fever greater than 102° F.
  • A fever that lasts more than five days.
  • A cough that produces blood.
  • Any shortness of breath or wheezing.
  • A change in the color of mucus.

If you have chronic bronchitis/COPD, choose lifestyle and activity changes that promote mental and physical health. Tips include:

  • Working as long as you are able to do so.
  • Managing your emotional health. Talk to a counselor if you need to do so. Make positive changes, like going outside, staying involved with friends and hobbies, getting a good night’s sleep and following suggestions of your healthcare provider.
  • Being a partner in your healthcare plan.
  • Asking for support from family and friends.
  • Managing stress by exercising and practicing relaxation methods.
  • Eating well.

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