A cough is a common reflex action that helps clear the throat and airways of irritants and mucus. Most coughs are not serious, and tend to go away by themselves within 3 weeks.

You may have a cough if you have:

Throat irritation or tickling sensation that triggers your cough
A dry, hoarse cough that doesn’t get rid of any mucus
A chesty cough that clears mucus from your throat
  • Respiratory infections such as colds, flu, or pneumonia
  • Allergies to pollen, dust, or pet dander
  • Exposure to environmental irritants such as smoke or pollution
  • Post-nasal drip (mucus running from your nose into your throat)
  • Persistent coughing 
  • Throat irritation or tickling sensation triggering the cough reflex
  • Production of mucus or phlegm when coughing
  • Chest tightness or discomfort accompanying the cough
  • Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids to help thin mucus and soothe the throat
  • Use over-the-counter cough medicines or lozenges to suppress coughing or relieve throat irritation
  • Avoid exposure to smoke or other pollutants
  • Use a humidifier or steam inhalation to moisten the air and ease coughing

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