Dry Cough

Dry cough can be irritating and painful, especially when it is persistent and reoccurring. Here we mainly talk about home remedies to relieve dry cough.

A cough is mainly to clear the air way from irritants and is a symptom, not a disease by itself. It can be broadly divided into 2 categories ---dry cough (non-productive) and chesty (productive) cough. There is production of phlegm or mucus in productive cough.

Inflammation of the throat and the upper respiratory tract results in dry cough. The cough starts due to an uncomfortable irritating or ticklish feeling in the throat.

Causes of Dry Cough

The common causes of dry cough are smoking, allergies and asthma. It can also occur when irritants like smoke, dust or chemical fumes enter the respiratory tract and after infections like flu, cold or sinus infections.

Infectious Causes

Viral and Bacterial infections can have dry cough as a symptom. Some of them are:

  • ŸViral infection of respiratory tract or common cold
  • ŸTuberculosis
  • ŸEmpyema
  • ŸPertussis or Whooping cough
  • ŸA type of bacterial pneumonia or legionnaires’ disease

Respiratory and Digestive System

Some ailments of the digestive system as well as respiratory system can also cause cough:

  • ŸBronchospasm or airway irritation, airway obstruction caused by foreign body
  • ŸCOPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), emphysema and chronic bronchitis
  • ŸAsthma
  • ŸPleurisy (Lining of the lungs and chest gets inflamed)
  • ŸCollapsed lungs (Pneumothorax)
  • ŸGERD – Gastroesophagealreflux disease

Medications

Side effects of some medicines can also results in cough. For example, ACE inhibitors used for hypertension like Captopril

Others

Some other conditions which may cause dry cough are:

  • ŸSmoking
  • ŸCongestive heart failure
  • ŸLung cancer, tumor of the larynx
  • ŸSystemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE)
  • ŸAllergy

Treatments of Dry Cough

Home Remedies

A lot of home remedies have been suggested to get relief from cough. They are especially beneficial when cough affects badly through the night. Some of the home remedies are given below:

  • ŸWarm Liquids: Warm liquids like water, soup or herbal tea soothe the inflammation in the throat and relieve the tendency of coughing. They can be taken throughout the day in small quantities.
  • ŸGargles: Gargling is known to relieve soreness in the throat. Warm water and salt gargles reduce the symptoms by draining excess fluid from the affected area. It also helps in removing the irritants and thins down the mucus in the throat.
  • ŸThroat Lozenges: Throat lozenges contain substances which provide relief. They contain cough suppressant like dextromethorphan and anesthetic like benzocaine. Other ingredients are usually honey, menthol, peppermint and eucalyptus oil.
  • ŸTurmeric Milk: Turmeric milk is very traditional and popular remedy for cough. Mixing half teaspoon of turmeric in one glass of warm milk provides relief for cough. The anti-bacterial properties of turmeric will work effectively on the throat.
  • ŸHoney Mixture: It soothes the lining of the throat and reduces cough. Honey can be had in various ways--- in combination with turmeric, honey and grape juice together, warm milk with honey before going to bedand warm water with honey and lemon juice which can be taken 3 times a day.
  • ŸGinger: Ginger promotes salivation and mucus secretion and helps to relieve cough symptoms.A mixture of ginger juice, honey, turmeric and black pepper powder provides relief from congestion and reduces cough.
  • ŸHumidifiers: Humidifiers are beneficial to provide relieve from dry cough, especially in a dry room. However,it’s very critical to ensure that the humidifier is clean, as bacteria and fungus can circulate in the room from a dirty humidifier.
  • ŸSteamy Showers: A warm, steamy shower can help in relieving dry cough which is caused by cold, flu, asthma and allergies. It also helps in getting rid of nose blockage.
  • ŸVitamin C Tablets and Cod Liver Oil: Cod Liver oil is rich in Vitamin E, and when taken along with vitamin C, it can help to fight the bacteria or virus which has caused the cough. They also help to enhance immunity.
  • ŸAvoid Irritants in the Air: Smoking, perfumes and air fresheners release particles in the air which can be irritants to the respiratory tract. They cause irritation in the sinus and can lead to chronic cough. Avoiding the use of such products and quitting smoking are very important.
  • ŸElevate Head While Sleep: Mucus from the nose can drip in the throat, especially when you are in sleeping position. This mucus can results in cough. When the head is slightly elevated with the help of pillows or cushions, the drainage does not affect the throat and reduces coughing during night.

More information of natural home remedies for dry cough in the video below:

Medicines

Some of the different types of medicines and their way of work are given below:

  • ŸCough Suppressant or Antitussives like dextromethorphan or pholcodine. They reduce the cough reflex.
  • ŸExpectorant likeguaifenesin or ipecacuanha. This kind of medicinescan generate more mucus in the lungs, so it is easier to expel via coughing.
  • ŸAntihistamine like brompheniramine, chlorphenamine, diphenhydramine, doxylamine, promethazine, or triprolidine. These medicines reduce chest congestion and decrease the quantity of lung secretion.
  • ŸDecongestant like ephedrine, oxymetazoline, phenylephrine, pseudoephedrine,or xylometazoline. They reduce the congestion in the lungs by constricting the blood vessels of the nose and lungs.

When to See a Doctor

When you have been suffering from cough for a long period of time, or it keeps reoccurring, or if you cannot figure out any cause for the cough, you should contact your doctor and get it checked. 

Recommended:

Why Does My Chest Hurt When I Cough?

If you or your child brings up the point, “My chest hurts when I cough,” it may not be dangerous. However, severe chest pain or trouble breathing can be serious.


Current time: 05/29/2017 03:48:31 am (America/New_York) Memory usage: 4060.13KB