Cough

Cough

What is cough? Cough is the sound made when the cough reflex clears the lungs.  Cough is a normal part of a cold.  Coughing up mucus is very important to clear breathing passages.  It helps protect the lungs from pneumonia.  We don’t want to fully turn off your child’s ability to cough.  

Causes of Cough

  • Common Cold – most coughs are part of a cold that includes the lower airway. The medical name is viral bronchitis. Bronchitis in children is always caused by a virus. Yellow or green phlegm is a normal part of the healing of viral bronchitis. Bacteria do not cause bronchitis in healthy children
  • Sinus Infection – the exact mechanism is unknown. It can be from post-nasal drip which irritates the lower throat or from pressure within the sinus which can trigger the cough reflex
  • Allergic Cough – some children get a cough from breathing in an allergic substance. Examples are pollens or cats
  • Asthma – asthma is the most common cause of chronic coughs in children
  • Air Pollution Cough – fumes of any kind can irritate the airway and cause a cough. Tobacco smoke is the most common example
  • Exercise Induced Cough – running will make most coughs worse. If the air is cold or polluted, coughing is even more likely
  • Serious Causes – pneumonia, bronchiolitis, whooping cough and airway foreign body (object)

Care Advice

  • Homemade Cough Medicine:
    • Age 3 months to 1 year: Give 1-3 teaspoons of warm clear fluids (apple juice and lemonade) 4 times per day when coughing
    • Age 1 year and older: Use honey ½ to 1 teaspoon (2-5 ml) as needed. It can thin the secretions and loosen the cough. Do not use honey until 1 year old
    • Age 6 years and older: Use cough drops to coat the sore throat
  • Non-Prescription Cough Medicine:
    • Non-prescription cough medicines are not advised. It has no proven benefit for children and not approved less than 4 years old (FDA 2008)
    • For children over 4 years old, you might decide to use cough medicine. Choose one with Dextromethorphan (DM), give every 6 to 8 hours as needed for severe cough which interfere with sleep and school
  • Use warm mist for Coughing Fits or Spells
  • Use a humidifier if the air in your home is dry as dry air makes coughs worse
  • Try to get your child to drink lots of fluids
  • Avoid Tobacco Smoke – tobacco smoke makes coughs much worse

What to Expect

  • Viral bronchitis causes a cough for 2 to 3 weeks
  • Sometimes, your child will cough up lots of phlegm (mucus)
  • The mucus can normally be gray, yellow or green
  • Antibiotics are usually not helpful.

Call Your Doctor If

  • Trouble breathing
  • Wheezing
  • Cough lasts more than 3 weeks
  • You think your child needs to be seen
  • Your child symptoms gets

Epic Urgent and Family Care serves the following neighborhoods and zip code for cough.

Neighborhoods we serve: Palatine, Arlington Heights, Buffalo Grove, Inverness, Barrington, South Barrington, Rolling Meadows, Wheeling, Prospect Heights, Deerfield, Mount Prospect, Lake Zurich, Glenview, Vernon Hills, Hoffman Estates, Schaumburg, Elk Grove Village, Downers GroveZIP Codes we serve: 60004, 60074, 60010, 60011, 60005, 60007, 60008, 60015, 60016, 60018, 60025, 60047, 60061, 60062, 60067, 60656, 60089, 60090, 60106, 60107, 60169, 60192, 60193

Palatine Urgent Care, Self-pay urgent care, Palatine Vaccines, Pediatric Practice, Pap Smear in Palatine

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(708)733-7750