When you have a cold or the flu, you need to drink a lot of fluids. Norman H. Edelman, MD, chief medical officer, American Lung Association; professor of medicine, Stony Brook University Medical Center, Stony Brook, N.Y. Donald R. Rollins, MD, associate professor, pulmonary division, National Jewish Health, Denver. Sipping hot drinks: A warm cuppa combines the steam effect for thinning mucus with throat-soothing effects. Alcohol and drinks with caffeine in them are not helpful choices because they can dehydrate you -- the opposite of what you need when you're sick. If your cough is severe or isn’t getting better after a week, call your doctor. A cough is a reflex action to clear your airways of mucus and irritants such as dust or smoke. You can look after yourself at home by resting, drinking plenty of fluids, and taking painkillers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen. Antibiotics will only help if the cause is a bacterial infection. But their report concluded there's little or no evidence that the heavily marketed active ingredients – including the DXM (dextromethorphan) often found in 'night time' formulations – do anything to ease the cough. Researchers from the American Chemical Society claim cough syrups work little better than a placebo, while other popular remedies such as echinacea, vitamin C and zinc are not likely to help either. Most coughs clear up within three weeks and don't require any treatment. Those excess sprays make your nasal membranes swell, which triggers more congestion, postnasal drip, and coughing. So if you have a cold or other respiratory infection avoid being outside for too long.

Acid reflux and obstructive sleep apnea can also cause a chronic cough. All rights reserved. Don't use them for more than 3 days, though. When a cough persists for 8 weeks or longer or goes away only to come back, that’s a chronic cough. Here's how to work out which you have and when to see your GP…. Symptom: Uncontrollable coughing fits, which may produce a 'whoop' sound. Pushing yourself too hard might just make you sicker. However, you should seek medical advice if: If your GP is unsure what's causing your cough, they may refer you to a hospital specialist for an assessment. A dry or sometimes tickly cough is a cough that does not bring up any phlegm or mucus.

Water, juice, and soup can help loosen mucus in your airways so you can cough it up and out. Continually coughing irritates your airways further, making your cough last longer. It's the aftermath of a cold or other viral infection, says Norman H. Edelman, MD, chief medical officer of the American Lung Association.

Sign Up to Receive Our Free Coroanvirus Newsletter, Personalized Treatments for Your Cold Symptoms. Symptom: A dry, niggling cough, often worse at night. At best cough suppressants can leave you drowsy and give you a better night's sleep, claim the scientists. Honey shouldn't be given to babies under the age of one because of the risk of infant botulism. If you're concerned about coronavirus (COVID-19), be mindful of our ibuprofen advice on the, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), Chat to an NHS operator in our Live Chat - opens a new window, an upper respiratory tract infection (URTI) that affects the throat, windpipe or sinuses – examples are a, a lower respiratory tract infection (LRTI) that affects your lungs or lower airways – examples are acute, a flare-up of a long-term condition such as, a long-term respiratory tract infection, such as chronic bronchitis, asthma – this also usually causes other symptoms, such as wheezing, chest tightness and shortness of breath, smoking – a smoker's cough can also be a symptom of COPD, bronchiectasis – where the airways of the lungs become abnormally widened, postnasal drip – mucus dripping down the throat from the back of the nose, caused by a condition such as rhinitis or sinusitis, a prescribed medicine, such as an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACE inhibitor), which is used to treat high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease, bronchiolitis – a mild respiratory tract infection that usually causes cold-like symptoms, croup – this causes a distinctive barking cough and a harsh sound known as stridor when the child breathes in, you've had a cough for more than three weeks, you cough up blood or experience shortness of breath, breathing difficulties or chest pain, you have any other worrying symptoms, such as unexplained weight loss, a persistent change in your voice, or lumps or swellings in your neck, asthma can be treated with inhaled steroids to reduce inflammation in your airways, allergies can be treated by avoiding things you're allergic to and taking antihistamines to dampen down your allergic reactions, GORD can be treated with antacids to neutralise your stomach acid and medication to reduce the amount of acid your stomach produces, COPD can be treated with bronchodilators to widen your airways. This can last long after the virus is gone. If you have this side effect, don't just stop taking it but do talk to your doctor. It's rarely a sign of anything serious. Do not go to your GP, pharmacy or hospital. We all get a nasty cough from time to tome. Coughs linger because the inflammation often stays long after the initial illness. The downside is that if you don't clean humidifiers thoroughly after every use they can become breeding grounds for fungus and mould which they then pump into the air, exacerbating coughs further. Our. But there are some simple tricks experts say will bring you some relief by soothing your irritated airways. For example: If you smoke, quitting is also likely to help improve your cough. Salt … Some people learn they have asthma during a cold.

Stay inside in the warm as much as possible: Cold air can exacerbate a cough. FamilyDoctor.org: "Colds and the Flu: Treatment.". If you’ve developed symptoms (however mild), stay at home for 10 days from the start of your symptoms and arrange to be tested. Symptom: A 'throaty' cough following a meal, and sometimes waking you at night, often leaving a nasty acid taste in your mouth. So what can we do about it? Moist air can be a trigger for asthma and encourage the growth of dust mites and mold, allergens that may start you hacking. To beat back a lingering cough, slow down and ease stress while you're sick. Children aged 6 to 12 should only use them on the advice of a doctor or pharmacist. When you subscribe we will use the information you provide to send you these newsletters. How you can treat a cough yourself. Last winter hospital admissions soared and surgeries reported seeing a large number of patients with a hacking cough that cannot be treated with antibiotics. On the other hand, cranking up the humidifier too high isn't helpful, either. The cough may also be referred to as "chronic," "lingering," or "nagging." If you're concerned about coronavirus (COVID-19), be mindful of our ibuprofen advice on the coronavirus page. Rarely, a persistent cough can be a symptom of a more serious condition, such as lung cancer, heart failure, a pulmonary embolism (blood clot on the lung) or tuberculosis. Keep a glass of water handy, day and night: Sipping water can help thwart a coughing fit, and the sooner you can stop one the better. Smart Grocery Shopping When You Have Diabetes, Surprising Things You Didn't Know About Dogs and Cats, Coronavirus in Context: Interviews With Experts. Harvard Medical School: "Sleep and Health.". Your cough, though, can hang around for weeks   because viruses can cause your airways to become swollen and oversensitive. Sometimes they’ll include recommendations for other related newsletters or services we offer. You …

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