Persistent coughs usually develop during a sickness, as well as at the end of the sickness, becoming dry and annoying. A chronic cough that lasts more than eight weeks can be the sign of some serious trouble. The most common causes of a persistent, lingering cough are post-nasal drip, asthma and acid reflux, according to the Mayo Clinic. Whatever the cause, it is important to treat the cough properly. If the cough becomes extremely painful, or does not stop, contact a doctor.
Things You'll Need
- Cough medicine
Drink plenty of water to rehydrate and to reduce the amount of mucus build-up.
Suck on throat lozenges and take cough suppressants from the pharmacy that contain codeine to ease pain and reduce the cough.
Sleep eight hours a night and rest at home to keep the body strong.
Visit your doctor if the cough persists more than eight weeks. A doctor may perform a CAT scan or an X-ray to have a look at your lungs and perform a lung test.
Avoid smoking to prevent a cough. See your doctor for recommendations on how to quit smoking, or visit your local clinic for nicotine gum or patches to ease the withdrawal symptoms.
Monitor your diet if the cough is due to acid reflux. Eat smaller meals, more frequently throughout the day. Wait three to four hours after a meal before going to bed.
Apply chest rub medication containing camphor or menthol before bed. This should reduce chest irritation and ease breathing.
Drink a mug of hot water or tea with honey to reduce coughing.
Avoid drinking alcohol. Alcohol causes dehydration and may exacerbate your cough.