Coughing can be bothersome and interfere with daily life. Although they can be caused by many things, a cough caused by respiratory infections like the common cold or the flu can last three to eight weeks.
If you have a cough that lasts much longer, see your doctor. You may need to treat the underlying cause of your cough (such as pneumonia or bronchitis ) rather than just trying to get rid of the symptom.
If you are looking for relief from a cough caused by illness, we have several options that can help.
Over-the-counter medications are designed to alleviate the condition by suppressing the cough reflex.
However, very little research has been done to show that these drugs actually provide benefits and side effects. Most clinical trials involving over-the-counter cough suppressants have shown that they are no more effective than they do nothing at all .
Expectorants, which are also available without a prescription, are different from cough suppressants because they do not stop a cough. They thin the mucus so it clears better and you cough up your throat more easily.
Unlike cough suppressants, these medications have been shown in clinical studies to decrease secretion, which can reduce the amount of coughing you have to deal with .
If the cough is caused by a cold, your family doctor will usually prescribe antihistamines and decongestants.
Prescription medicine for cough
Prescription cough suppressants are used to relieve a cough that is so severe that it disrupts daily activities (usually sleep), and over-the-counter medications are not effective.
Most prescription cough medications include codeine, which is a narcotic and causes even more side effects and risks than over-the-counter products.
It has several other ways to relieve a cough.
Cough drops : Cough drops or throat drops that contain menthol can temporarily relieve a cough. Menthol acts as a mild anesthetic and can reduce the urge to cough.
Humidifier: If you have an upper respiratory disease, using a humidifier can help alleviate many of the symptoms you are facing. Infuses the air with extra moisture, reducing irritation from dry air that can cause discomfort in a sore throat and nasal discomfort.
While using a moisturizer won't cure a cough , it can help reduce respiratory irritation, which means you can cough less often.
A tablespoon of honey. Recent studies have shown that honey is more effective for coughs than over-the-counter cough medicines, especially in children. A whole tablespoon of honey can cover the throat and relieve a cough, at least occasionally.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, honey should never be given to babies younger than 12 months. Contains botulism spores that are not harmful to adults but can cause botulism poisoning in children under one year of age.
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If you're dealing with a bothersome cough caused by a mild illness, these tricks can provide temporary relief.
However, it is important to remember that coughing is a good thing. By causing irritation, they help us remove excess mucus from our airways and prevent it from entering the lungs and causing more serious illnesses such as pneumonia.
If your cough persists for more than a few weeks or if it has changed significantly, see your doctor to determine if you need a different type of treatment. Although most cases of cough resolve on their own, some are more serious and warrant further investigation.