If children cough frequently, it is important to clarify the causes quickly. Cough is not a disease but a symptom, a protective reflex of the body that is activated for a variety of reasons. A distinction is made between cold cough, dry irritable cough, bronchitis, whooping cough, pseudo croup and so-called habit cough. However, it can be permanent Cough Alert children to asthma.
Depending on the type of cough, conclusions can be drawn about the cause, which in turn shows the way to the appropriate treatment. In the classic cold cough, viruses are usually the trigger an upper respiratory tract infection. In this case, the cough indicates that the airways are irritated. The body tries to cleanse the respiratory tract from the pathogens via the cough reflex. It is important that the child drinks a lot, because adequate hydration together with increased humidity support the body in recovery.
At night the upper body should be raised a little so that the mucus better can drain off. Classic breast wraps warm the breast, promote blood circulation and thus also ensure a better mucus solution. Children’s bronchial balm – massaged on the chest and back – also has a warming effect and makes breathing easier. However, skin tolerance must be clarified beforehand, since babies in particular can react to certain components with skin irritation.
If the symptoms do not subside and the cough does not improve after two weeks, a doctor must be consulted. According to pediatricians, 10 to 12 such infections per season are not uncommon in babies and toddlers up to 12 months of age, since the immune system must first get to know all the pathogens in order to be able to build up a strong immune memory for the future.
Irritable cough, bronchitis, pseudo croup
House dust, particulate matter or allergens, such as mold or the dust of the house dust mite, can dry out cough cause, also cold or especially dry heating air can be responsible. This type of cough sounds barking, occurs without expectoration and sometimes causes chest pain. Inhalations and full baths with essential oils are particularly helpful here, and radiators should also be turned off, as these dry out the room air. Alternatively, damp towels or room humidifiers ensure optimal air humidity in heated rooms. Warm honey milk or cough teas soothe the affected throat. Since allergies are often the cause of the cough stimulus, it is absolutely necessary to clarify whether and what kind of allergy is present in the child if there is a regular cough.
In children, a normal cold cough often develops much faster bronchitis, than is the case with adults. This is an inflammation of the mucous membranes in the bronchi – that is, the branched airways that connect to the trachea and direct the air into the lungs. The main symptom of acute bronchitis is persistent cough with viscous expectoration, and those affected also have difficulty breathing out.
Here, too, inhalations and sufficient hydration help to relieve the affected bronchial mucosa. In addition, expectorants in the form of cough syrups dilute the mucus in the respiratory tract and subsequently make it easier to cough up. Since bronchitis is triggered by viruses in the vast majority of cases, the use of antibiotics is often pointless; antibiotic therapy only makes sense in the event of an additional bacterial infection.
at croup It is an inflammation of the mucous membrane in the larynx and vocal cords area, which is caused by viruses. Babies and toddlers in particular are particularly susceptible to this disease, whose most striking symptom and typical of the clinical picture is the loud, barking cough that usually occurs during the night from sleep. The swelling of the respiratory tract often leads to difficult breathing and difficulty breathing. Even if the barking cough sounds threatening, it is important to keep a cool head and to provide the child with sufficient oxygen. Wrap your child well and walk with him to the open window or on the balcony – the cool, fresh air quickly makes breathing easier. Even if the larynx usually resolves after a day or two, a doctor should be consulted after such an attack.
Signs of asthma?
If cough persists for more than four weeks, asthma can also be the cause. Therefore, a doctor should be consulted to clarify whether and which form of this chronic disease is present. A distinction is made between allergic (extrinsic) asthma and non-allergic (intrinsic) asthma, the medication also depends on the type of disease. While a cure is hardly possible in adults, children have a good chance – provided that the asthma is recognized early and treated consistently – that they will no longer be affected in adulthood.
Sophie Matzik is a freelance writer for the NetDoktor medical editorial team. This text corresponds to the specifications of the medical literature, medical…
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