Irritating cough (dry cough) – causes, symptoms & treatment

Irritating cough (dry cough) - causes, symptoms & treatment

Cough (dry cough)

The cough In contrast to normal wet cough, it usually occurs without expectoration (coughing mucus) and is therefore also considered a so-called "dry cough". The frequent coughing fits sound barking and hard. The dry, irritating cough usually occurs at the beginning of a cold, but then changes over the course to a normal cough with expectoration. But even with various lung diseases, the irritating cough can cause symptoms as a symptom.

Table of Contents

What is irritable cough (dry cough)?

As cough becomes a dry cough labeled without ejection. It is characteristic of many different diseases and can also occur as a side effect of drug treatment. The severity of the irritating cough varies: some affected patients only cough and have no pain, while others cough day and night and therefore not only have difficulty breathing, but also sleep disorders.


In the most harmless case, the irritating cough is only due to the onset of a cold – no sputum has yet formed from the infection, but the mucous membranes are already irritated by the foreign invaders and want to get rid of them, which is why the cough is triggered. In some cases, irritable cough can develop after the cold, since the mucous membranes do not yet realize that the disease is over or are still irritated and try to get rid of any pathogen immediately.

In the worst case, irritable cough can also be a serious condition such as whooping cough or a drug-induced condition – ACE inhibitors are known for this.

Symptoms, complaints & sign

A coughing cough usually has fairly clear symptoms that are perceived very painfully by the person concerned. Probably the most common symptom of an existing cough is a strong and permanent scratching in the throat area. Coughing up from a cough is very difficult and occurs more often at night.

Therefore, there may be significant sleep disorders. In addition, there is a lot of mucus, making it extremely difficult for people to breathe. Chest pain is also a clear and typical symptom associated with a coughing irritation. Anyone who refrains from medical and medicinal treatment in the event of a persistent coughing cough exposes himself to a great risk.

The symptom already described will worsen considerably, so there may even be inflammation in the lungs. However, if you decide on an appropriate treatment at an early stage, you can count on a quick and smooth recovery. The symptoms will subside after a few days and the affected person will find it easier to cough up.

A cough is often a lengthy process, accompanied by typical symptoms. These are usually painful symptoms that can only be eliminated with appropriate medication.


The most common complications of irritable cough include stinging chest pain and headache. Sometimes the dry cough is also responsible for the development of nosebleeds. Even bleeding into the skin and mucous membrane is possible.

It is not uncommon for the cough to be accompanied by hoarseness or a sore throat (pharyngitis). In some patients, these symptoms are only triggered by the cough. The voice sounds soft, pressed and rough. Sometimes she even stays away completely.

A dreaded complication in women is urinary incontinence. In doing so, the affected people pass urine on without coughing. In severe cases, the dry cough is responsible for a hernia or diaphragmatic hernia. Another consequence is the cough syncope, which leads to the patient suffering from fainting from coughing fits.

The reason for this is a cramping of the diaphragm, which hinders the return of blood to the heart. For this reason, the brain temporarily receives too little sugar and oxygen, which in turn can result in brief loss of consciousness.

When to go to the doctor?

An irritable cough is a very dry cough that is very difficult to cough up. Often, however, a cough is not an independent clinical picture, but rather a symptom of an existing illness. If there is no clear improvement after three to four days, a suitable doctor should always be consulted. A specialist can find the cause of the irritable cough and initiate appropriate treatment. A thick, green mucus, for example, is a sign of inflammation in the airways. In such a case, medical and drug treatment is required.

Anti-inflammatory coughs can be combated quickly and effectively using anti-inflammatory drugs. If the sick person refrains from such treatment, the symptoms can worsen or last a few days longer. Pneumonia may even develop under certain circumstances.

treatment & therapy

To the cough To be able to treat effectively, it must first be clarified where its causes lie. If it is a legacy of a cold that has survived, a light antitussive is usually prescribed, which is supposed to work against the irritable cough and provides the patient with long-term relief.

In asthma, too, it only helps to treat the symptom of coughing cough in order to improve the quality of life in difficult seasons. Treatment with other forms of irritant cough is more complicated – the prime example of this is the form induced by long-term cigarette smoke. When the irritable cough occurs, the condition is already chronic and only an attempt can be made to improve the patient’s quality of life despite the chronification.

If, on the other hand, the cause of the irritant cough is due to medication, an alternative to medication that is more symptom-free and more pleasant for the patient should be sought.


The best prevention against cough and dry cough is to stay away from cigarettes and other similar stimulants and not to passively inhale the smoke. In this way, a chronic irritable cough can no longer arise, which occurs one day and never disappears, but in the worst case only intensifies in its severity.

However, a cold or asthma can always cause a coughing cough – the only effective way of prevention is to protect yourself effectively from the common cold and to seek the help of a doctor if asthma is already known when the coughing cough appears for the first time or again.

In general, you should immediately consult a doctor if you experience a coughing irritation – this is especially true if you are currently taking medication and the symptom was not present before or did not express itself to the same extent. In order to prevent worse coughing, the medication should be adapted and better optimized to the needs of the patient.


In addition to a runny nose, a cold is often accompanied by a cough. Dry cough can also be an independent clinical picture. As long as the symptoms do not persist for more than a week or two, or worsen significantly, a dry cough requires no further follow-up. Nevertheless, the complaints must be treated medically, since a pronounced irritable cough can be very stressful for the patient, especially during the night.

Herbal medicine such as sage lozenges, cough tea and cough syrup offer relief to those affected. Taking antitussive medication before bed is also an appropriate treatment. If the cough persists after a period of two weeks, follow-up care is useful to avoid a chronic course of the disease.

If medication was previously prescribed and there is still no improvement, further examinations are necessary to find out the actual cause. If, for example, the symptoms are based on bronchitis, it is treated as part of the aftercare and the healing process is monitored by the family doctor. The only follow-up that the patient can take care of with irritable cough is to avoid damp cold and to keep the neck warm with the help of neckerchiefs or scarves.

You can find your medication here

home remedies & Herbs for irritable cough

  • Anise helps against flatulence, coughing up mucus, asthma and white flow and ensures good sleep.
  • Cough tea is prepared as follows: 5 grams of ribwort plantain, lungwort, coltsfoot, wool flower, aniseed grains, licorice, hibiscus roots and 10 grams of Icelandic moss.
  • Another cough tea is made from half a tablespoon of liquorice, half a tablespoon of violet roots, a tablespoon of marshmallow roots, half a tablespoon of coltsfoot leaves, half a tablespoon of woolen flowers and just as much anise seeds. They then use this mixture to make a cup of tea from a teaspoon. Best sweetened with honey.
  • Regular consumption of apple cider helps to cough irritation: boil the juice of sour apples with sugar and fennel and take them slowly.
  • In mild cases, honey milk works very well for coughs. A tablespoon of honey or fennel honey is dissolved in a cup of hot milk. Drink one cup as hot as possible in the morning and in the evening.
  • Spruce needle honey is a good expectorant cough suppressant. The spruce flowers are set with sugar.
  • Lilac blossoms are very sweaty, antipyretic and work for a cough and cold.
  • Malventee is a good remedy for runny nose and irritable cough.
  • Coltsfoot is appetizing and helps with coughing up irritation, mucus and hoarseness.
  • In the case of persistent irritating cough, boil majora tea sweetened with honey and sip in the morning, at noon and in the evening. This is particularly suitable for children.

You can do that yourself

Dry, irritating cough is very annoying and has a negative effect on a good night’s sleep. Accompanying drug therapy, there are various self-help strategies and home remedies that can alleviate the dry cough and support healing:

Sucking cough drops and pastilles stimulates salivation. They often contain Icelandic moss or marshmallow extracts, the mucilaginous substances of which protectively cover the irritated mucous membranes and thereby relieve scratching in the throat. Warm milk with honey or fennel honey has the same effect. These can be taken just before bedtime.

An important self-help measure for irritable cough is an increased hydration. About 2 – 3 liters of liquid, preferably water or tea (no chamomile tea, this dries out the mucous membranes further) should be to prevent the mucous membranes from drying out and to support the secretion of the protective liquid film in the respiratory tract. During the night’s sleep, increased humidity should also be ensured. For this purpose special humidifiers can be used or damp towels can be hung up. In heavily heated rooms, bowls with water can be placed on the radiators.

In addition to steam baths and inhalation with z. B. table salt or thyme, warm potato wrap for the upper body.

Smoking and excessive physical exertion should be avoided in the case of a cough.

Related Posts

Like this post? Please share to your friends:
Christina Cherry
Leave a Reply

;-) :| :x :twisted: :smile: :shock: :sad: :roll: :razz: :oops: :o :mrgreen: :lol: :idea: :grin: :evil: :cry: :cool: :arrow: :???: :?: :!: