Feeling sick? Not sure what you have, or which are the defining symptoms? You may have walking pneumonia, which is a casual term for a group of infectious bacteria that cause sneezing, coughing, and general ache and malaise.
Incredibly contagious, both before and after pnuemonia symptoms begin, walking pneumonia is being referred to by CBS as “This Year’s H1N1”.
Treatment being recommended for walking pneumonia involves a large amount of antibiotics, and possibly steroids.
Although they may be helpful if you are incredibly ill, most people with walking pneumonia (as indicated by the name) are able to continue to function normally, and may go to work, the store, school, and other public places.
So what’s one to do, given this form of pneumonia is highly contagious?
Wash your hands frequently, especially in public places. If someone inconsiderately failed to do so, or to sneeze/cough politely (into the elbow), you are at a high risk for contracting walking pneumonia. Contagious diseases can very easily survive for weeks in the mucus released by sneezing and coughing, so hand washing is your only protection when there may be many who don’t even know they’re sick.
If someone around you (at work, for example) is sick, treat them kindly while saving yourself their walking pneumonia. Suggest they go home and rest for a few days, or at least see a doctor—walking pneumonia can be diagnosed with a blood test in one visit.
Meanwhile, strengthen your immune system. Antioxidants, natural antimicrobial agents, and other immune system boosters are great at keeping you healthy.
If you do manage to succumb to walking pneumonia, rest, take lots of water and vitamins, and give everyone around you space. Since walking pneumonia is highly contagious, the last thing you want is for it to cycle through those around you and infect you twice.
Regular pneumonia is a severe infection of the airways in the lungs, and is characterized by coughing, chest pain, fever, mucus, and more severe aches. If you have regular pneumonia, it is likely caused by a virus, and not treatable with antibiotics.
Is there a walking pneumonia outbreak in your area?