Typically, coughing is your body’s reaction to clear your throat and airways. Coughing can be triggered by smoking, air pollution, bronchitis, choking, gastro-esophageal reflux disease, asthma, or even a post-nasal drip. However, coughing can also be a symptom of a worsening condition. Frequent coughing can indicate a possible disease.
For many people, a chronic cough — one lasting eight weeks or longer — is much more than an annoyance. In addition to being physically draining, a cough that hangs on for months can alienate your family and co-workers, ruin your sleep, and leave you feeling angry and frustrated. For a condition that may be relatively minor, a chronic cough can have major repercussions.
Treatment for acute, or even chronic, coughing can include cough medicine that suppresses the cough; however, the American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend the use of cough medicine for children. Antibiotics and inhaled corticosteroids can be used to treat a chronic cough.
A chronic cough is often defined as a cough lasting eight weeks or more, but any persistent cough can disrupt your life. See your doctor if you have a cough that lingers, especially one that brings up sputum or blood, disturbs your sleep or affects your work or relationships.
If you are struggling with a cough and would like to seek medical attention, please call or visit one of our conveniently located clinics.