Does My Child Have Pneumonia?

If your child comes home from school or daycare with an emerging cough, it is best to keep an eye on it. There are many different illnesses that can start with a cough, including upper respiratory illnesses like bronchitis or pneumonia.

It is possible for anyone to contract these two infections, but it can be particularly dangerous for children to experience them. Our AFC Urgent Care South Charlotte team lays out the details regarding bronchitis and pneumonia in children below, so keep reading.

Are the Signs of Bronchitis and Pneumonia the Same?

Upper respiratory infections affect the airways, but in different ways. Bronchitis irritates and inflames the bronchial tubes. These tubes are responsible for moving air in and out of the lungs, so if they become inflamed, it can make it harder to breathe normally. Pneumonia, on the other hand, is an infection within the alveoli in the lungs. These little sacs are responsible for the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood, and with a pneumonia diagnosis, they fill up with fluid and cause a deep cough and respiratory issues.

The initial symptoms of a cough and chest discomfort can be similar with both bronchitis and pneumonia, but it is important to note that pneumonia often causes more widespread symptoms throughout the body. Chills, body aches, a fever and extreme fatigue are all common symptoms of pneumonia.

Those at Risk of Severe Infection

  • Children with chronic illness like heart or lung disorders
  • Anyone who has asthma
  • Premature infants
  • People with compromised immune systems

Do I Need to Bring My Child to a Doctor for Pneumonia?

You are the expert when it comes to your child! If you notice that something is amiss or just don’t feel like your child is acting right, come see us for an evaluation. While the majority of pneumonia infections don’t progress to require medical attention, it is not out of the realm of possibility.

We can do a full evaluation of your child’s symptoms, get a health history, and if he or she is over the age of 6 months, we can do a chest X-ray to discover where the infection is located and if it has spread. From there we can offer a treatment plan to help your little one feel back to normal in no time!

When to Seek Immediate Medical Attention for Pneumonia or Bronchitis

  • If your child is having trouble breathing
  • If your child’s fingernails or lips have a blue or gray color
  • If your child has a high-grade fever of 102 degrees or higher
  • Your child is under 6 months of age

Does your child have a concerning cough? Stop by AFC Urgent Care South Charlotte today.