Coughs are common symptoms of colds and other respiratory infections but could be due to many different causes. If you’re suffering from a severe or persistent cough, contact your local PrimeMD office in North Columbus, Newark, Lancaster, Westerville, Kenton, Marion, Wilmington, Dublin, or New Albany, Ohio. The experienced medical teams can diagnose the cause of your cough and prescribe treatments that relieve it. For fast cough relief, call PrimeMD today to schedule a consultation or book an appointment by completing the online form.
Sometimes you might start coughing because you inhale something that irritates your throat, or you swallow awkwardly. Coughs can also be a symptom of numerous health problems, including:
Colds and flu are some of the most likely causes of a cough. You might start with a dry, tickly cough, which develops into a chesty cough when phlegm starts building up in your airways.
A continuous, dry cough is a key symptom of COVID-19.
A cough that persists for several months or more for no identifiable reason could be a symptom of lung cancer.
Allergies to airborne particles like dust, pollen, molds, and animal dander can trigger coughing.
Chronic lung conditions like emphysema or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) can cause coughing.
Many other conditions might make you cough at times, from gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) to sleep apnea and postnasal drip. One common condition for which cough is a primary symptom is bronchitis.
Bronchitis develops when bacteria infect the bronchial tubes linking your esophagus and lungs. The infection makes the bronchial tubes swell and generate thick mucus, causing a cough.
Bronchitis could develop after a respiratory infection such as a cold or flu. These viral infections make you more vulnerable to a bacterial infection like bronchitis, leaving you with a persistent cough even when your cold is better.
Sometimes, bronchitis develops into a chronic problem, lasting for months or frequently coming back.
In most people, coughs that are due to viral infections clear up without needing medications. Your immune system clears these infections naturally, but you can help out by resting and staying hydrated.
Over-the-counter throat lozenges or cough syrups can ease your symptoms; however, they don't cure the cough. Expectorants can help loosen phlegm so you can cough it up more easily. Inhalers or humidifiers can also help your breathing.
For bacterial infections that are causing conditions like bronchitis, antibiotics might be necessary.
You can also help prevent coughs by observing good hygiene, so you don't pick up infections. Vaccination against flu and COVID-19 reduce your risk of getting these diseases.
If you have a cough, find out why and what you can do to get rid of it by contacting the team at PrimeMD. Call the nearest office today or book an appointment online.