Treatment of pneumonia is dependent upon the type and severity of a person's pneumonia. Most cases are treated by drinking plenty of fluids and getting rest, says the American Lung Association.
Drinking fluids helps to loosen secretions and release phlegm, according to the American Lung Association. Cough medicines should not be taken without consulting a doctor, as certain medicines may make coughing up sputum harder for the body. Fevers can be controlled with aspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or acetaminophen. A person may require admittance to a hospital if he has other serious medical problems, severe symptoms, cannot care for himself, is older than 65 or has not seen improvement in his condition. After admittance, patients may receive fluids and antibiotics via their veins, oxygen therapy and breathing treatments.
Young, healthy patients recovering from pneumonia may resume normal activities within a week, claims the American Lung Association. Middle-aged patients may require several weeks of recovery before they regain their strength.
The most common symptoms of pneumonia include coughing, potentially with greenish, yellow or bloody mucus; fever; chills and shortness of breath, reports the American Lung Association. Patients may also feel sharp chest pain when breathing deep or coughing, headaches, excessive sweating, clammy skin, loss of appetite, and confusion. Depending on whether the pneumonia is bacterial or viral, additional symptoms can manifest.
Pneumonia can be diagnosed by a doctor listening to a patients lungs with a stethoscope. Patient's lungs typically make a crackling, bubbling and rumbling sound when breathing in, says the American Lung Association.