Lifestyle and home remedies
Besides the basic treatments of rest, liquids and over-the-counter cough medications, these suggestions can help make you more comfortable, speed recovery and prevent complications of acute bronchitis and help control the symptoms of chronic bronchitis:
Avoid exposure to irritants, such as tobacco smoke. Don't smoke. Wear a mask when the air is polluted or if you're exposed to irritants, such as paint or household cleaners with strong fumes.
Use a humidifier in your room. Warm, moist air helps relieve coughs and loosens mucus in your airways. But be sure to clean the humidifier according to the manufacturer's recommendations to avoid the growth of bacteria and fungi in the water container.
Use over-the-counter medications. To relieve pain and lower a high fever, acetaminophen (Tylenol, others) and ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others) may help.
Consider a face mask outside. If cold air aggravates your cough and shortness of breath, put on a cold-air face mask before you go outside.
Try pursed-lip breathing. If you have chronic bronchitis, you may breathe too fast. Pursed-lip breathing helps slow your breathing, and may make you feel better. Take a deep breath, then slowly breathe out through your mouth while pursing your lips (hold them as if you're going to kiss someone.) Repeat. This technique increases the air pressure in your airways.