Walking Pneumonia: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, And Prevention

Posted on: 24 November 2015

If you're dealing with a cold or flu-like illness that seems to be lasting a bit too long, you may be dealing with walking pneumonia. Luckily for you, this type of pneumonia is mild and easily treated, but in order to know that treatment is needed, you first must know the signs. Below is an overview of walking pneumonia, what causes it, its symptoms, and how this infection can be treated and prevented.

What is Walking Pneumonia and What Causes It?

Walking pneumonia, named as such due to its mild symptoms, is an inflammation of the lungs caused by a bacterial infection.

Pneumonia can be caused by a number of things, including bacteria, viruses, and fungi, but walking pneumonia, sometimes also referred to as mild or atypical pneumonia, is commonly caused by one bacteria in particular: mycoplasma. While not everyone who comes into contact with this bacteria will become ill, bacterial pneumonia can be easily passed from person to person through saliva, such as when an infected person coughs or sneezes, and this infection can quickly spread in crowded areas, such as at schools and places of employment.

What are the Symptoms of Walking Pneumonia?

Walking pneumonia is a mild form of pneumonia which means its symptoms are mild as well. This makes walking pneumonia difficult to recognize and also means that many patients go a long time without treatment.

Individuals with walking pneumonia will experience symptoms such as coughing (which can occur in groups and may cause violent spasms), mild flu-like symptoms, sore throat, headache, and general malaise. These symptoms usually occur over a period of two to four days and can easily be misidentified as a cold or flu. The main thing to be aware of is fever and mucus – a fever that doesn't go down with over-the-counter fever reducers or mucus tinged yellow or green can be a sign of infection and you should be seen by a doctor immediately.

How is Walking Pneumonia Treated and Prevented?

While some cases of walking pneumonia will clear up on their own, many patients still require antibiotics to fully rid the body of the bacteria.

If you're seeking treatment for walking pneumonia, it's likely that the infection is severe enough to require antibiotics. It can take a few days for you to begin to feel better, so rest and fluids are highly recommended while recovering. You can help to prevent the condition, however, by getting vaccinated, limiting contact with sick individuals, washing hands thoroughly, keeping your hands away from your face, and eating a healthy diet.

If you suspect you have walking pneumonia, make an appointment with your doctor as soon as possible so you can be on the road to recovery quickly.  

To learn more, contact a medical clinic like Choice Medical Group