Coughs do serve a purpose other than annoying our loved ones that are trying to sleep. Coughs are important in removing irritants, improperly swallowed food and aspirated liquids. Yet there are times when a cough can be a sign of something more pressing about your health.

Viruses like Colds and the Flu are some of the most common contributors of coughing. Productive coughs can help rid your lungs of mucus but can leave your chest feeling irritated. This in-turn causes you to continue coughing, and dry coughs from colds can last for weeks or even months.

Reasons for Coughs:

  • Post nasal drip
  • Cigarette smoke
  • Allergies to pollen or molds
  • Asthma
  • Acid reflux
  • Medication side effects
  • Chronic lung inflammation
  • Sleep apnea
  • Cold air
  • Strong perfumes

Great ways to control your cough start with over-the-counter measures:

  • Allergy medications like generic Claritin, Allegra, and Zyrtec.
  • Saline rinse for your sinuses or a neti pot.
  • Use a humidifier during winter months while heating your home.
  • Drink more water to avoid a scratchy throat.
  • Take PPIs like Nexium, Pepcid or Zantac if you have heartburn along with your cough.
  • If you’re working outside in dust, pollen or woodworking, wear a mask to keep from inhaling particulates.
  • Avoid second-hand smoke and smoking.

Reasons to be seen for a cough:

  • Coughing up blood or bloody phlegm
  • Choking
  • Wheezing
  • Shortness of breath and chest tightness
  • High and persistent fever
  • Painful chest when not coughing
  • Loss of appetite

Please call any one of our clinics for questions or to make an appointment:

Afton Clinic: 307-885-5852 and Afton Urgent Care: 307-885-5700

Thayne Clinic: 307-883-5852

Alpine Clinic: 307-654-5852 and Alpine Urgent Care: 307-654-5700

Coughs was last modified: April 15th, 2019 by Star Valley Health
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