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Allergic Bronchitis: All You Need To Know

Medically reviewed by Jezreel Esguerra, MD · General Practitioner

Written by Fiel Tugade · Updated Mar 08, 2023

    Allergic Bronchitis: All You Need To Know

    When it comes to lung diseases, everyone has a common notion that they cause you to cough hard and bad. While it may be true in most cases, inflammation can take place in specific parts of the lungs that may be of different severity. Thus, these require different management and treatments such as for allergic bronchitis. This ‘allergic bronchitis all you need to know’ article sums up all the things you need to take into consideration when dealing with this type of bronchitis.

    Types of Bronchitis

    There are different forms of bronchitis. For some, it may be just an acute type that can be treated in a few days or weeks, while others may have it longer with more serious complications. They may have a chronic type of bronchitis that falls under the chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases (COPD) category, which continuously affects their way of breathing and living. 

    What is Allergic Bronchitis?

    Bronchitis takes place when the bronchioles (or the windpipes in the lungs) contain too much mucus that causes the inflammation. Allergic bronchitis is a condition in which a person’s severe allergies cause a bronchial immune system reaction. This type belongs to the chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) family that may last for more than 3 months or so. 

    Bronchitis occurs when the windpipe and airways within the lungs become inflamed. Allergic bronchitis is a condition in which a person’s severe allergies cause a bronchial immune system reaction. Doctors can sometimes tell the difference between it and regular bronchitis by looking for other allergic symptoms in the patient.

    Allergic Bronchitis All You Need To Know: Signs and Symptoms

    The first thing that people ask of when discussing ‘allergic bronchitis all you need to know’ is what are the signs and symptoms a person shows when they have it already. 3 of the most common symptoms are:


    A daily cough that lasts at least three months (or more) is the most common sign of allergic bronchitis. The severity of the cough may vary from one person to another. 

    Shortness of breath

    Shortness of breath is a common symptom that tends to worsen over time. It may occur when a person is doing exercises or different activities that cause him/her to lose breath while doing it. Dyspnea can occur as the condition progresses.

    Wheezing (and crackling) sound

    Wheezing refers to the high-pitched sound produced by air passing through the bronchial tubes’ tiny passages.

    Other symptoms may include:

    • Sputum (mucus) production
    • Chest pain and discomfort
    • Sore throat
    • Headache
    • Fatigue 
    • Bluish change in the color of fingernails, lips, and skin (due to lower oxygen levels)

    Allergic Bronchitis All You Need To Know: Causes

    A chronic type such as allergic bronchitis is not caused by any viral or bacterial infection. Cigarette smoking, according to specialists, is the leading cause of chronic bronchitis. The work environment, as well as air pollution, may also bring several effects to your lungs. 

    Allergic Bronchitis All You Need To Know: Treatment

    Management and treatment will always depend on the severity of the disease and its underlying inflammation. For most chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases (COPD), there are several drugs in which your doctor may recommend:


    Doctors prescribe antibiotics to help treat the infections that cause coughs, breathlessness, and even the production of mucus. 

    Anti-inflammatory drugs 

    Corticosteroids (or commonly known as steroids) and other anti-inflammatory medicines are often used to reduce swelling and mucus production. However, it may cause a variety of adverse effects, including but not limited to feet and hand swelling, mood swings, weight gain, insomnia. It may also lead to more serious complications such as diabetes, increased infection risk, osteoporosis, and cataracts.


    Bronchodilators relax the muscles surrounding the airways, allowing the airways to remain open. It may come in two types: long-acting and short-acting. Short-acting medications are commonly referred to as “rescue drugs” since they work fast but wear off within a few hours.

    Doctors may also opt to mix up the management with a combination of steroids and bronchodilators.


    There are many ways in which you can prevent having inflamed bronchioles.

    • Quit smoking or avoid exposing yourself to secondhand smoke
    • Avoid irritant exposures such as dirt, dust, and mold
    • Make washing your hands a habit
    • Eat a healthy diet
    • Have your influenza shots
    • Always wear your face mask 
    • Take your medicines accordingly and appropriately

    Key Takeaway

    Your cough may mean different things. This is why it is important to know what are the signs and symptoms, causes, treatment, and prevention to be able to also check on yourself from time to time. 
    If you suspect yourself of having allergic bronchitis, consult your doctor right away.

    Learn more about Bronchitis here


    Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

    Medically reviewed by

    Jezreel Esguerra, MD

    General Practitioner

    Written by Fiel Tugade · Updated Mar 08, 2023

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