Can you get bronchitis after the flu?

It’s that time of year again – sniffles, sneezes, and coughs are all around us. With flu season in full swing, you may be wondering if there are any other illnesses you should be wary of. One common question is whether or not one can contract bronchitis after having the flu. The answer isn’t as simple as a yes or no, so let’s dive into it.

What is Bronchitis?

Before we start looking at relationships between illnesses, let’s define what bronchitis actually is. Bronchitis refers to an inflammation of the bronchi – air passages within your lungs that allow air to flow in and out. There are two types: acute and chronic.

Acute bronchitis often develops following a cold or viral infection such as influenza (the flu). It typically lasts for several weeks before clearing up on its own.

Chronic bronchitis occurs when the lining of your bronchi have become inflamed over an extended period due to various long-term factors like smoking. This type requires medical attention to manage symptoms because it sticks around forever like that roommate who ate your last pizza slice again.

How Does the Flu Play Into All This?

The interesting thing about getting sick during winter seasons when upper respiratory tract infections rule supreme is how they interrelate with each other!

What happens very frequently is someone could succumb to Influenza A/B virus family- meaning they will catch either 1) Cough-like symptoms from these viruses infecting their throat/lungs region OR/OR 2) develop new cases where secondary bacterial infections develop aka “opportunistic” species take advantage of weakened immune system flourishing thus leading them towards potential further complications.

When someone contracts seasonal influenza virus(es), it promotes an influx in mucus production via airways which then causes coughing (to rid themselves of debris) which also could It lead to increased possibility for developing acute bronchitis.

While influenza is thought to be confined only with affect the upper respiratory tract, severe cases leach from mucus membranes into transport tubes necessitating medical intervention.

Did you follow all that or do I use too many long words? Hope this isn’t making people sick!

The Relationship Between Bronchitis and Other Illnesses

It’s important to note that while someone may have contracted a specific illness such as the flu, they may still develop other related illnesses in connection with their current infection.

A person’s body often becomes weak during such seasons leading them vulnerable to pneumonia, increasing risks across multiple neighboring sectors. Pneumonia includes an inflammatory response within lungs which causes cough or fever similar symptoms. And if left untreated then chronic bronchitis can onset due to reduce immune system functionality.

Over time.. various comorbidities add up leading towards scarring lung fibrosis situations being linked when influenza virus take advantage preventing proper ventilation processes.

But let us back it up: will having the flu make you more susceptible for acute type opportunistic infections?

Yes; developing such acutetye secondary bacterial infections symptoms through weakened immunity means experiencing prolonged mental focus pressure on family/support loved ones at a time physical state is already hurting .

Typically after suffering from viral pneumonia-like episode we tend expect reoccurrence of same fast acting bacteria taking advantage/ multiplying leading further pulmonary episodes 🙁 Aftermath causing havoc on both patient (and those around…) mentally/emotionally/drainingly speaking! Even now heard stories warning potential Congenital cardiac vascular malformations defects caused by early onset influa instances since so much redundancy piling after previous strain events not yet built ready defenders…Yikes!

Symptoms and Treatment

If somebody happens to exhibit these issues below here are some commonalities one can expect to experience;

  • A cough that won’t go away even after your cold has subsided
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest tightness or discomfort
  • Wheezing

If you’re experiencing these symptoms, there are a variety of over-the-counter treatments like inhaled bronchodilators such as Albuterol inhalers (emergency) and/or oral anti-inflammatories . If it’s still not getting better after being proactive then put up the white flag and contact medical personnel ASAP.

How Can You Avoid Getting Bronchitis After the Flu?

Here are a few tips on how you can keep yourself healthy this winter season and reduce the chances of developing acute/chronic bronchitis.

  1. Stay Educated – Keep informed about local public health alerts keeping communication with healthcare provider updated .
  2. Wash Your Hands Often – The main culprit causing illnesses stem from poor hygiene habits! Ensure stay extra sanitizing & washing more frequently than beforehand.
  3. Get Vaccinated – Opt to be vaccinated against common viral infections prevalent within certain demographics .
  4. Avoid Secondhand Smoke – This is particularly important if susceptible towards chemical/smoke exposures breathing in second hand fumes containing harmful chemicals affecting lung membranes functionality triggering somnexted-type episodes!
  5. Lending our personal anecdotal favorites; don’t forget an herbal teas mixed jar featuring honey grated orange zest cayenne pepper diluted into steaming mugs improving inner immunity.

Bronchitis is no laughing matter well sometimes but seasonal recoveries when moving ahead means hopefully stronger immune protection next time around!


So, what have we learned today? Contracting influenza virus might cause inflammation along airways creating vulnerability for developing respiratory tract particulates subsequent infections such as opportunistic bacterial pathogens.Plus several prolonged comorbidity risk factors compounding over time leading new pulmonary symptoms & findings.

Although influenza itself isn’t directly tied to bronchitis, it can make you more susceptible. Little things like washing your hands often and avoiding secondhand smoke can go a long way in keeping you healthy during flu season!

Stay safe out there, folks!