Having a cold is a completely normal thing. No matter how healthy you eat or not, it has been estimated that adults can experience it at least 2-3 times per year. The symptoms can vary from one person to another, but the most common thing they all have is cough. Unfortunately, the coughs differ as well, and consequently – their treatment.
Dry cough is one of the most common type caused by cold and flu. According to doctors, these coughs happen when there is little or no mucus in the throat. It manifests with tickling sensation in the throat and consistent cough. A good thing about this cough is that it usually goes away on its own. However, if it gets persistent this means that it has become chronic, so in this case, people should consult with their doctor This is because this cough can lead to:
- Asthma – Besides the cough, people with asthma usually experience a tight sensation in the chest, wheezing and shortness of breath.
- Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) – This condition happens when the stomach acid travels up towards the throat which can result in a cough.
- Lung Cancer – This is quite rare, as a dry cough cannot lead to lung cancer. A cough that is related to lung cancer manifests as blood in the mucus.
Treating Dry Cough
In some people, drinking water and eating honey can do wonders for fighting off a dry cough. However, for many, the use of cough drops and cough syrup is needed. A cough syrup can soothe the throat as well as any cold and flu symptoms like runny nose, blocked nose, sneezing, watery and itchy eyes. When looking for the proper cough syrup Australia pharmacists recommend consulting with a specialist. This is because each syrup has different active ingredients and therefore a different effect. For instance, herbal syrups might not be helpful with persistent coughs.
And just like some medicines cannot be mixed with alcohol, the same goes with some types of syrups with a specific active ingredient. Another thing people should be aware of is that not all cough syrups are designed for children as well, especially when talking about kids under the age of 6. You should be especially careful if buying a syrup from a supermarket.
The usual description of a wet cough is a chesty, productive cough. The main difference between a dry and productive cough is in the mucus. A person with a wet cough has mucus or phlegm. Just like dry cough, wet coughs can also happen due to flu, common cold, but they can also happen because of a chest infection. This type of cough can sometimes be accompanied with mucus that contains a small amount of bright red blood. However, if the blood is too dark and contains food that resembles coffee grounds, seeking medical help is a must. Just like with dry coughs, wet coughs can be chronic as well.
- Bronchiectasis – This is a condition that results in small pouches of mucus pools that the body is unable to clear.
- Pneumonia – Pneumonia is a bacterial infection that causes the lungs’ tissue to become inflamed. The use of antibiotics might be needed for this condition.
- Nontuberculous Mycobacteria Infection – This condition is non-contagious and can result in weight loss, tiredness and feeling unwell.
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) – This condition is also known as lung disease where shortness of breath and wheezing are the most common symptoms.
Wet Cough Treatment
Just like with dry cough, drinking lots of fluids can ease the symptoms. However, the use of cough syrups is also an option as they can help people feel more relieved and get rid off the mucus faster.
Also known as whooping cough, this one is usually manifested with intermittent attacks of violent and uncontrollable cough. The paroxysmal cough can feel exhausting and painful and some people can even vomit and struggle to get a breath. An important thing related to this cough is that it usually happens from a bacterial infection and should be treated with an antibiotic. The saddest part about this cough is that babies have a higher risk of developing it, and they can face some serious complications. Luckily, there is a way to avoid this with the help of a vaccine.
Important Information: Family members should protect themselves too as this cough is contagious. In case there are some symptoms, treating them immediately would have a better outcome.
This cough usually affects children around the age of 5. Croup cough is considered a viral infection that causes the upper airway to become swollen and irritated. It is characterised with a barking cough that sounds like a seal. Children with such cough have difficulties breathing and the swelling around the voice box can cause a raspy voice and squeaky breathing noises. In the most severe cases, children can become pale or bluish.
Croup Cough Treatment
A good thing about this cough type is that it usually passes on its own. Some of the home remedies include the use of a cool-mist humidifier in the room, drinking lots of fluids, resting, going outside and breathing cool fresh air. In some severe cases, the use of prescription steroid might be needed. This can be done with the help of nebulizer breathing therapy.
Can You Take Cough Syrup When Breastfeeding?
Yes. It is completely okay to take cough and cold remedies while breastfeeding. However, consulting with a pharmacist or a professional is needed as not all medicines are designed to be used when breastfeeding.
Is it Safe to Take Cough Syrup During Pregnancy?
While pregnant, the immune system might run at a slower speed which means that pregnant women are more prone to colds and coughs. Luckily, there are some medications that doctors consider safe during pregnancy. They could certainly ease the symptoms and make the mum feel more energised.