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Coughing Types & Treatments

A cough is your body’s natural way of clearing your throat and airways, protecting itself and helping your body heal. Coughs can be caused by many different things, so discovering the source of a problematic or persistent cough will help you with treatment. For example, if you have been told by a medical staff member that you have the common cold or flu, antihistamines may help ease your coughing symptoms better than an over-the-counter cough syrup.


What type of cough do I have?

There are two types of coughs: Acute and Chronic.

Acute Coughs

Acute coughs are most often associated with the common cold, flu, pneumonia or acute bronchitis. This type of cough often lasts less than three weeks.


Chronic Coughs

Chronic coughs are most often associated with allergies, asthma, smoking, croup, chronic bronchitis, GERD, or COPD and can last eight weeks or longer. A chronic cough may leave you feeling exhausted because your sleep may be interrupted. You may also experience vomiting or lightheadedness.


The medical staff at Midwest Express Clinic will evaluate your medical history, including your recent physical exam charts. To help relieve your cough, it is best to quit smoking or avoid being around those who smoke. A cough can indicate a wide array of issues such as sinusitis, allergies or a more serious infection such as pneumonia or even whooping cough.

Woman with a cough and cold sneezing into a tissue

Cough Treatments

When Should I Seek Treatment For My Cough?

  • If the cough has been around longer than one week
  • If you are coughing up yellow or green mucus
  • If you experience wheezing or shortness of breath
  • If you have a fever

The above symptoms do not usually require an emergency room visit, but seek treatment if your cough is interrupting your daily activities. The urgent care at Midwest Express Clinic is the perfect solution when you need fast and effective care for non-life-threatening illnesses or injuries.

At-Home Cough Remedies

Sometimes, adults can treat their chronic cough in the comfort of their own home with DIY remedies. Before you self-treat, it may be best to consult your primary care physician (PCP) or the medical staff at Midwest Express Clinic to see what remedies might work best.

Always talk to a medical care professional before taking natural herbs or supplements as these may have bad interactions with other medications you may be taking.

Some remedies you may try at home are:

  • Hydration
    Drink plenty of fluids. Water is the best option. Staying hydrated helps thin the mucus.
  • Gargle
    Use warm water with salt. This will help to clean your throat and help loosen any mucus that may be present there.
  • Cough drops
  • Avoid use of tobacco products
  • Ginger
    May be used in tea to clear the nasal passage.

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