By Jenn Morson, Reader’s digest
Upper respiratory infections typically clear up within two to three weeks, but they can develop into pneumonia. If you are experiencing one or more of these pneumonia symptoms, it’s time to consult your doctor.
You may develop a low-grade fever with an upper respiratory infections (URI); it’s not common, but also not impossible. If, however, that fever reaches 101 degrees or higher, there’s a greater chance that URI has developed into pneumonia. (Related: Could it be a sinus infection? Here are common sinus infection symptoms.)
Rapid heart rate
If during your illness you notice your heart beating faster than normal, take a moment to check your heart rate. Anything over 100 beats per minute is considered a rapid heart rate. If a rapid heart rate persists, seek medical attention. Learn why pneumonia can increase your heart attack risk.
When an URI moves down into the lungs, a tightening of the chest and pain may occur. Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs and not just the upper respiratory system. The pain is a signal that the URI has developed into something more serious. Keep yourself healthy with these smart ways germ experts boost their immune systems.
A persistent cough is common with a URI. Eventually, that cough becomes productive and allows for the body to push out mucus. However, if that cough is consistently wet and rattly, this could mean that the URI has turned into pneumonia. If you have a cough that keeps bringing up mucus and doesn’t bring relief, you may have pneumonia. These are the 10 other reasons your cough just won’t go away.
If the mucus being produced by your cough is tinged with blood or has a rusty color, this is a potential sign that the discharge is coming from deep in the lungs, which indicates a lower respiratory infection such as pneumonia. Let your doctor know about this change as it may require a different course of treatment. Find out how the dentist can help you prevent pneumonia.
Patients with pneumonia often report teeth-chattering chills that cannot be remedied. Chills are a sign of fever and that the body is working overtime to regulate temperature. This is a sign that an upper respiratory infection has developed into pneumonia.
If you have been suffering a cold or upper respiratory infection and your breathing becomes shallow or labored, you may have pneumonia. This is a serious symptom that may require a nebulizer breathing treatment in order to open the lungs. Consult your physician immediately to avoid further issues from oxygen deprivation such as lightheadedness, blood flow issues, or losing consciousness. Watch out for these other 12 signs your “common cold” could be something way worse.