Why Finding An Appropriate Dry Cough Remedy Is So Important
Finding an appropriate dry cough remedy in the early stages of the cough can sometimes be very important. A dry cough, also called a non-productive cough, can at times be a symptom of a serious underlying disorder. In any event, a dry cough can be quite uncomfortable, and having an effective dry cough remedy on hand might save you from having to deal with a great deal of discomfort.
Let's assume for the moment that your cough isn't symptomatic of a serious condition. If you have a pretty good idea of what is causing the cough, pollen for example, it wouldn't be anything serious. What you would then want to be looking for in the way of a dry cough remedy, would be a cough suppressant. A cough suppressant doesn't normally cure anything, but it can relieve the coughing, and making life a little more comfortable. In the absence of an effective remedy, coughing may cause the throat to become quite sore, possibly leading to other problems as well.
From Dry To Productive
A dry cough is sometimes an early sign of a respiratory disease. When this is the case, the cough will most likely soon become a wet or productive cough, and you'll begin to cough up sputum. When this happens, it's usually in your best interest to encourage the coughing, since coughing helps clear accumulated mucus out of the throat, the air passages, and the lungs. The appropriate remedy now is no longer a cough suppressant, but an expectorant. Hopefully you've treated the earlier dry cough appropriately, so your throat hasn't become unbearably sore by the time the “good” coughing begins, the coughing you don't want to suppress. A productive cough is a part of the healing process. The same can not usually be said for a dry cough.
Cause Not Always Known
Whereas a productive cough is usually indicative of a bacterial or viral infection, such as a common cold or pneumonia, what causes a dry cough isn't always known. A dry cough can be brought on by an allergy, by pollution, or by smoking, but whatever the case, it's an indication that something in your respiratory system is a little haywire. If the cough persists, it's always a good idea to visit your doctor. Your doctor can at least determine if there is a serious underlying condition that requires immediate attention. In some cases however, even an eye, ear, nose and throat specialist may not be able to determine the exact cause of the cough, unless other telltale symptoms are present.
Dry cough is sometimes one of the symptoms of asthma, where the only appropriate dry cough remedy would be medication that effectively treats the asthma. Taking certain medications can bring on a dry cough, just as eating certain foods that somehow irritate the respiratory system can. Stomach acid in the throat can produce a dry cough, as those who have been suffered from acid-reflux disease can attest to. The remedy, aside from a cough suppressant, has to address the backup of stomach acid to be effective or long lasting.
Lung diseases or disorders can produce both kinds of coughing, wet and dry, which is one reason why it's so important to seek medical advice if a dry cough persists for an unreasonable length of time. Unless or until you pay a visit to your doctor, there are a few things that can be done to help relieve a dry cough, making your life a little more bearable.
Honey Or Onion?
One of the best dry cough remedies comes straight from the kitchen. It's a mixture of honey and hot water, or a cup of warm tea laced with a little honey. Keeping your head slightly elevated when sleeping can also help, or at least help you get some needed sleep. Another home remedy some people swear by is to eat a raw onion. Personally, tea with honey seems to be a little more appealing, but in the case of a hard, raspy cough, it's whatever works.
It's also important to drink plenty of fluids. What you drink may or may not help relieve the cough. That's all right, as long as the fluid doesn't make he dry cough worse. Coughing, wet or dry, tends to dehydrate the body, which can be prevented by drinking plenty of fluids. Drinking fluids also will tend to help you feel a little better than you otherwise might. Drinking coffee or other fluids containing caffeine isn't usually recommended, but if you absolutely have to have a cup of hot coffee for breakfast to get your day off to a decent start, by all means have a cup, cough or no cough. If it's not good for you, you'll probably find out shortly. Over-the-counter cough suppressants will also help. Just remember, cough suppressants don't cure anything, but still they may make life easier until the either the condition cures itself, or you visit your doctor. Your doctor may prescribe a stronger cough suppressant, which is fine, but remind him during the visit that you would like to know the cause and a possible cure, but you're grateful for whatever relief his prescription provides in any event.