How to reduce the risk of catching Pneumonia

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- We are in the height of cold and flu season that's on top of the coronavirus pandemic. Another worry this time of year is pneumonia.

Temple Health says prevention is key.

Pneumonia is a real concern this time of year. And when left untreated it can be deadly.

"We're talking about 60,000 people die from pneumonia every year, this is the largest cause of death from any infectious disease aside from what we're seeing right now with the COVID stuff annually. So this is a big, big thing," said pulmonologist Dr. Patrick Mulhall.

Temple Health said prevention is critical, especially if you have risk factors.

"They may have comorbidities such as COPD, asthma, maybe an uncontrolled diabetic, hypertensive type patient that requires more extensive care," said nurse practitioner Tanya Bronzell- Wynder.

"Getting a flu shot, getting a pneumonia vaccine if you're eligible, they're not going to necessarily prevent you from getting it but if you do get it, they're going to make it a heck of a lot easier for your body to treat it," said Dr. Mulhall.

If you do get sick, be sure to monitor your symptoms and the duration they last, even if you are under treatment.

"Let's say three to five days into treatment that's typically when you should start to see improvement," said Bronzell-Wynder.

That means you still have a fever, your cough is not getting any better and you have shortness of breath.

"That's the time that we would tell you to go to the hospital," said Bronzell-Wynder.

They also said if you are sick to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. That means 72 to 84 ounces of fluid a day.
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