What is a Chronic Cough?
A chronic cough is a cough that lasts for more than 8 weeks for adults and for more than 4 weeks for children. Unlike normal coughs, these are more persistent and become a major annoyance over time. The symptoms that can come with a Chronic Cough are also troublesome. Hoarseness, runny nose, heartburn, and rarely coughing up blood are some things that can be challenging to face in addition to a Chronic Cough.
Coughing serves an important function and happens when mucus, germs, and dust is brought up from the lungs. Typically coughs are minor and are usually short-lived, but a cough may be caused by a simple condition like a cold or the flu. Coughs caused by these conditions typically last a few days. Even though very rare, a cough can linger for weeks, months, or even years. This is called a chronic cough. A chronic cough can become serious if you start coughing without knowing an official cause.
What are the causes of a Chronic Cough?
Chronic Coughs are caused by conditions like postnasal drip or allergies. Dust and mold are the leading allergens causing a Chronic Cough. Even though chronic coughing is rarely seen as life-threatening, it can still be seen as a major annoyance on a day-to-day basis for most people. Chronic coughing can keep you from falling asleep, be a distraction in the workplace, and disrupt your social life. If a cough is lasting more than a few weeks, it is recommended to visit your doctor.
Treatments for a chronic cough
Having a cough that lasts more than 8 weeks can feel exhausting. Some remedies that can be tried at home before going to a doctor are getting a humidifier to put more moisture in the air, drinking lots of fluids, soothing the throat with cough drops, and staying away from tobacco smoke. Cough suppressants and antibiotics can be used to reduce inflammation. Suppressants won’t fight the source of the problem, but they will allow you to sleep better through the night.
Reflux medicines are a good choice for treating a cough, as they help neutralize, reduce, and block acid production. Your doctor will prescribe a medication based on your unique symptoms. These medicines can include:
- H2 receptor blockers
- Proton pump inhibitors