It’s that particular time of the year when signs of flu and cold make way for nonstop coughing, and you may have a persistent cough that seems intended to stick around until springtime. But let us be honest as coughing can be annoying — regardless of the season— from that first tickle in your throat to dealing with the stuff that could come up with every heave. Not to mention that persistent cough can be a pain in your throat and the chest.
Having a lingering cough can be unpleasant, but having a persistent cough can be particularly worrying. So how do you understand the difference? And how do you know when to consult a cough doctor? If you’re dealing with a cough and you’re starting to suspect something more serious is at play, here’s a rundown of when you should check with a doctor!
Here are the common reasons for a persistent cough.
1. A Respiratory Infection
You might expect your cold or flu cough to clear up around the same time you start feeling better. As the body works to get back to full health, it’s healthy for it to continue for weeks after that. However, if you have chest pain while breathing or cough, as well as fever, fatigue, vomiting, weak chills, nausea, diarrhoea, and shortness of breath, you might have what happens when the air sacs in your lungs get infected. Pneumonia can be life-threatening, so head to the Cough Treatment Clinic Homer Glen if you experience these symptoms.
Pertussis is another respiratory infection you need to keep a check on, even though it seems like a disease from the 19th century, but you should care about it. Unfortunately, this contagious infection is still around. It is commonly known as whooping cough.
Pertussis may seem like the common cold at first, causing symptoms such as a runny or stuffy nose, red, watery eyes, fever, and cough. Then it can progress into an uncontrollable cough which ends in a high-pitched breath which sounds like “whoop,” hence the nickname of the condition.
3. Asthma and Allergies
Frequent coughing—especially at night—is a common symptom of asthma as per the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI). People with asthma usually make a whistling or wheezing sound in their lungs when they cough, but a variation of the condition called cough-variant asthma is also possible. The only symptom is chronic coughing, as per the experts.
Unlike people with “normal” asthma, typically people with a form of cough variant have causes that trigger their symptoms to flare up. Pollen, pet dander, dust, mould, cold air, air pollution, perfume, heat, and exercise can be stuff like that. If you think a lot of these sounds like allergy triggers, then you are right. And asthma also goes hand in hand, with an allergic reaction to a product causing symptoms of asthma-like coughing. (Allergies can also cause you to cough on your own, as your body tries to get rid of anything that bothers it.)
If you’re suffering from a persistent cough and your physician suspects it’s due to asthma, they may have you see a specialist like an allergy testing specialist homer glen. Once you know your triggers, it’s best to try to avoid them as much as you can, but doctors of Suburban Wellness can help you flesh out a whole treatment plan to manage your asthma better.
4. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
This is a long-term lung disease, including chronic bronchitis and emphysema. If you have this disease, you’ll experience chronic airway inflammation that triggers at least three months of mucus-producing cough, with at least two years of recurrent attacks. If chronic bronchitis gets worse all of a sudden, it might be because you have an infection that causes acute bronchitis on top of the chronic form.
COPD sounds very frightening, but the condition is manageable with adequate treatment. When you think you’ve got COPD, see a physician for help. Suburban Wellness helps patients book appointment through PatientMD.
5. Acute Bronchitis
Acute bronchitis involves inflammation of the bronchial tubes that transport air to and from your lungs, according to the experts. This inflammation will force you to cough regularly to try and get irritants and mucus out of it. It can also narrow and swell the airways making it difficult to breathe.
Whether you don’t have time to visit a doctor or because you’re a little afraid of what they might find, it might be tempting to try and wait for your cough to sort out. But long-term coughing can lead to complications like or even, so you don’t want to risk it. Instead, visit your doctor about a cough, figure out what causes your cough and get yourself on the road to feeling better.