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What is epiglottis?

Epiglottis is very important part of the respiratory and the digestive system and it is, actually, the extended part that forms the closure over the breathing tube, and thus blocks the foods from entering the airway. Its function is highly important, so, any damage to it could lead to the fatal outcome. That is exactly why any change of it should be treated right away after being noticed.

The inflammation of the epiglottis and how to spot it

However, the most common problem that could affect this particular flap which is located at the root of the tongue, is the inflammation of it. It usually happens due to various reasons and most frequently as the consequence of some underlying disease, such as, for example, flu (provoked by the bacteria), but, it may be as well triggered by some injury at the back of the throat, or simply after drinking some excessively hot beverage. This inflammatory process is dangerous because the most prominent indicator of it is the swelling, and with the enlargement of this lid, the passage of the air to the lungs (medically called trachea) can thus as well be obstructed. So, it is always better to prevent such the type of the medical urgency and treat this condition timely and the signs show up usually within one day. That is why it is essentially important to stay calm, to remain in the sitting position (which alleviates the process of breathing) and to provide the medical help as soon as possible.

Besides the apparent swelling and, therefore, the troubles while breathing, the other accompanying indicators of this health problem are very intense ache in the throat, the troubles while swallowing (followed by the significantly increased amount of mucus), the increased temperature of the body, the change in the sound of the voice and anxiety.

The persons who hadn’t undergone the compulsory vaccination for the prevention of the flu caused by the type B bacteria (called the Hib vaccine), males and the crack smokers are most likely to be affected by this dangerous problem. Having in mind that the bacteria is the most common trigger of such the case scenario (concerning the matter of the flu), the inflammation could be treated with the medications that annihilate bacteria, administered through the blood. However, the basis of the first aid actions is to provide enough air to the affected person, and the best way to do that is to put the special passage directly to the air opening. That passage must be kept in that location until the swelling goes away. In the more severe cases, the intervention of supplying the air directly to the trachea is performed.

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