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Child’s Cough

Child’s Cough

Everything you need to know
about your Child’s Cough

Your child’s body is doing its job when he or she coughs.

Coughing is a reflex that clears the throat and chest of fluid. When nerve endings in those airways get inflamed, this occurs.

It’s one of the most frequent cold and viral symptoms, including the flu. Antibiotics, on the other hand, will not stop a virus. Viruses must be allowed to run their course.


A cough indicates that your child’s body is attempting to expel an irritant. Coughing can be caused by a variety of factors, including:


Colds, flu, and croup can all leave children with a persistent cough. Colds generate a mild to a moderate hacking cough, the flu a sometimes severe, dry cough, and croup a “barking” cough with noisy breathing that occurs largely at night. Antibiotics are not used to treat viral infections, although other drugs can be used to manage them.

Acid reflux

Coughing, frequent vomiting or spitting up, a terrible taste in the mouth, and a burning sensation in the chest, known as heartburn, are all symptoms of acid reflux in children. Reflux treatment is determined by a child’s age, health, and other factors. Consider the following suggestions: Remove the foods that cause them to become irritable from their diet (often chocolate, peppermint, fried, spicy, fatty foods, and caffeine and carbonated drinks). Eat at least two hours before going to bed. Also, eat more frequently but in smaller portions.

Because the symptoms of asthma differ from child to child, it can be difficult to identify. However, a wheezing cough that gets worse at night is one of many symptoms. A cough that comes with increased physical exertion or during play is another possibility. Asthma treatment varies depending on the cause, however, it may include avoiding triggers such as pollution, smoke, or fragrances.

Allergies or sinusitis

A prolonged cough, as well as an itchy throat, runny nose, watery eyes, painful throat, or rash, can be caused by allergies or sinusitis. Consult your child’s doctor about allergy tests to determine which allergens are causing the problem and for suggestions on how to avoid them. Food, pollen, pet dander, and dust are examples of allergens. Allergy medication or allergy injections may be recommended by your doctor.

Whooping cough

Back-to-back coughs, commonly known as pertussis, are followed by a “whooping” sound inhale in whooping cough. A runny nose, sneezing, and a mild temperature are all possible symptoms. The whooping cough virus is contagious, but it can be avoided with a vaccine. Antibiotics are used to treat whooping cough.

Other reasons children cough

After being sick with a cough, inhaling a foreign object like food or a small toy, or being around irritants like pollution from cigarettes or fireplace smoke, a youngster may cough out of habit.

Call 999 if your child:

  • Is unconscious or not breathing
  • Is gasping for breath
  • Is choking
  • Has trouble breathing or is breathing very fast when not coughing
  • Has severe coughing attacks or continuous coughing
  • Can’t cry or talk because of breathing trouble
  • Grunts when breathing
  • Has blue lips or fingernails
  • May have a small object caught in their throat
  • Is breathing very fast (this is also a symptom of fever)
  • Looks very sick

When to call a doctor

Call your doctor when your child:

  • Is under the age of one year old and still has breathing problems after you’ve cleaned out their nose
  • Is less than 4 months old and has a rectal temperature of more than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit. (Do not give fever drugs to children under the age of two.)
  • You could have a lung infection or a flare-up of reactive airways disease.
  • Is wheezing or a high-pitched whistling sound heard when inhaling or exhaling?
  • Because of chest pain or blood in your cough, you can’t take a deep breath.
  • Has a temperature of more than 40 degrees Celsius that hasn’t gone down in 2 hours after taking fever meds
  • Is suffering from a fever that lasts more than 72 hours?
  • Is it possible to vomit?
  • When coughing, it turns red or purple.
  • Drools excessively or has difficulty swallowing
  • Has a compromised immune system or has not been fully immunised


Before giving your child cough medicine, see your doctor or speak with a pharmacist. Children under the age of six shouldn’t be given over-the-counter cough medicine. They aren’t intended for small children. Even children’s medications can cause dangerous side effects including high blood pressure and convulsions.

Although there are no drugs that will cure a virus-induced cough, there are treatments that can help relieve the symptoms. Here are a few solutions to try at home:

1. Prevent Dehydration

Give your baby as much breast milk or formula as he or she needs.
Give older kids water or juice that has been blended with water.

2. Relieve Congestion

With saline nasal drops, thin mucus in a stuffy nose.
Using a suction bulb, remove mucus from a baby’s nose.
Put a humidifier in your child’s room or take him or her into the bathroom while it’s steaming.

3. Ease Breathing

To add moisture to the air, use a cool-mist humidifier.
Allow your child to breathe in the steam as you sit in the bathroom with a hot shower running.

4. Make the Child Comfortable

Allow the child to sleep.
Irritants, such as cigarette smoke, should be avoided.

Children and Cough Medicine

Colds and flu are not curable with medication, but coughing can create a sore throat, which can be relieved with honey, hard candies, or cough drops. Because of the risk of choking, they should only be given to children over the age of four.

Honey-based cough drops should not be given to children under the age of one. Some agave-based cough syrups are safe for children under the age of one year.

Try a warm, steamy bathtub or chilly morning air to assist children to cope with croup. If a child with asthma has persistent coughs, they may need to take steroids or other drugs prescribed by their doctor.

Children under the age of four should not be given cough medication. These medications are not just not approved for very young children, but there is also no evidence that they benefit.

It’s also worth noting that minors under the age of 18 should never be given aspirin. Reye’s syndrome, a rare but dangerous brain disorder, can be caused by aspirin in children.