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Healthy Diet Plans >>  Health Issues and Diet >>  Cough

Cough Remedies

A cough is one of the most common ailments, affecting men, women and children of all ages. Almost all people have suffered from a cough at some time or the other. At times, a cough could be a one-off occurrence, which lasts for a couple of days and then disappears. However, there are many people who suffer from a chronic cough, where the cough lasts for months, or disappears, but keeps coming back every few weeks. In most instances a cough is not a serious problem, even though it could lead to a lot of discomfort.
However, in many people, a chronic cough may be a symptom of a serious underlying condition, which needs medical intervention. While it is easy to get over the medicines to reduce a cough, there are side effects associated with most of them, which is why most parents prefer to use natural cough remedies for toddlers, babies and infants.

There are several different cough remedies for infants and babies that are effective in alleviating a cough, but have fewer side effects, as compared to traditional medication. Some of the most commonly recommended cough remedies for babies include:
  • Rubbing some eucalyptus essential oil on to the baby’s chest or back, or giving the baby a warm bath to which a few drops of eucalyptus oil have been added.
  • A teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice, mixed in warm water and some honey can boost the child’s immunity and will also relieve the cough at the same time.
  • Placing a vaporizer or a humidifier can reduce throat dryness during the night, which also alleviates throat soreness and coughing.
  • Sterilizing the environment, so that it is free of any allergens is very important in treating ailments like a cough.
  • Warm licorice tea has antibacterial properties and it can soothe the baby’s throat, thereby curing a cough faster
These are also effective cough remedies for toddlers. However, the cough remedies for adults are bound to a slightly different. Some of the most widely recommended cough remedies for adults include nasal sprays, vaporizers, warm liquids, vitamin C and rest. A bad cough during pregnancy could be quite difficult to deal with, especially as pregnant women are not allowed to take most types of medication. Therefore, it is best to consult a doctor for the most appropriate cough remedies for pregnant women.

Cough Medicine

Most parents find it very painful to see their children suffering from cough, especially when it keeps them up all night. Unfortunately, not all instances of cough can be cured with the help of home remedies. In some cases, it becomes necessary to administer medical treatment in the form of certain drugs. Many parents ask doctors if it is safe to use a cough medicine for toddlers or infants. The FDA warns parents against the use of cough medicine for kids, as there are negative side effects, like drowsiness associated with these kinds of drugs. Unfortunately, there are many parents who use cough medicine for infants, simply to keep them quite or to get them to sleep. Giving the child cough medication when it is not required will cause the child to build up immunity towards the drug and after a while the child’s body will stop responding to it. However, pediatricians claim that it is acceptable to use cough medicine for kids, including the younger ones, in case it is absolutely necessary and the child is facing problems while sleeping. Therefore, it is best for parents to speak to their doctors and get an approval, before using any cough medicine for toddlers, infants and children.

Cough medicine for pregnant women could have an adverse effect on the baby, as everything consumed by the woman during the course of the pregnancy eventually reaches the baby. Therefore, before taking cough medication or any other medicine, it is important for pregnant women to consult a doctor.

Cough Causes

There is a lot of information on the different cough causes that can be easily accessed. However not a lot of people are aware of the effects that cough could have on their bodies, if it is not controlled in time. Of course, after suffering from this problem for a couple of days, people do tend to realize that cough causes rib pain, because of the movement of the body while coughing. However, there are several other effects too that coughing could have on the body over a period of time. Most people soon realize that cough causes headache, which can be quite severe and long lasting. Cough headaches are usually characterized by sharp and intense pain at the back of the head or towards the top of the head. It is also often seen that cough causes sore throat and irritation and as the vocal chords get disturbed due to the coughing action, a person’s voice may also change, becoming hoarser.

A severe bout of cough causes vomiting too, especially in younger children. This is more likely to occur when the child is suffering from whooping cough, lung infections, acute bronchitis, pneumonia and COPD. Therefore, it is best to consult a doctor in such cases.

Several people consult health experts to know if cough causes hernia. It is true that continuous and strenuous activity could cause a weakening in in the abdominal muscles, which in turn could lead to hernia in some people. However, this is not likely unless a person is suffering from severe chronic coughing.

Cough Symptoms

There are several different types of cough symptoms in children and adults that can help people identify the underlying cause of the cough. Apart from the importance of the cough symptoms for diagnosis purposes, most doctors also prescribe medication based on the various symptoms that they see. Cough symptoms and treatment are correlated because based on the symptoms that are evident, the doctor will diagnose the type of cough, for example, a whooping cough, a dry cough, croup cough or a wet cough.

Croup cough symptoms in infant:
  • Alteration in skin color
  • Difficulty in breathing and swallowing
  • Drooling
  • High fever
  • High pitched breathing noise while inhaling
  • Irritability or agitation
Whooping cough symptoms in babies:
  • Change in facial skin color
  • Cough followed by a whooping sound
  • Coughing up thick phlegm
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea and vomiting

Cough Diet

People who prefer opting for natural treatment for coughs, such as home remedies should also consider following a diet for cough, which helps alleviate the symptoms of a cough and boosts a person’s immunity so that the recovery is faster. Foods that are an important part of cough diet therapy include whole grains, beans, egg yolks, Brussels sprouts, oranges, carrots, liver, pineapples, lemons, pears, fish, papaya, grapes, legumes, soybean, and so on. Fried food, sweets, junk food and cold foods should be strictly avoided.
Submitted on January 16, 2014