Relieving A Cough
Coughing is your body's way of getting foreign substances and mucus out of your lungs and upper airway passages. Coughs are often useful, and you should not try to eliminate them. Sometimes, though, coughs are severe enough to make breathing difficult, cause vomiting, or prevent rest. Home treatment can help you feel more comfortable when you have a cough.
Although there is no evidence to show that cough preparations help a cough, some people may find them useful. Avoid cold remedies that combine medicines to treat many symptoms. It is generally better to treat each symptom separately. There are two kinds of cough medicines: expectorants and suppressants.
Research on cough suppressants and expectorants reports that nonprescription cough suppressants were no more effective than a placebo in relieving cough and that there is not enough evidence to determine the effectiveness of nonprescription expectorants.1
If you have sore muscles from coughing a lot, have someone massage your chest and back muscles a few times each day. Massage can reduce soreness and help you rest and relax better.
Cough preparation precautions
For more information about medicine safety, see the topics Over-the-Counter Medicine Precautions and Quick Tips: Giving Over-the-Counter Medicines to Children.
eMedicineHealth Medical Reference from Healthwise
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