Do you suffer from allergies? Colds? Acid reflux? No matter what the cause is, there is a simple reason behind all their hacking: “Coughing is a protective mechanism to clear the airways,” explains Jonathan Parsons, MD, Director of the Cough Clinic at Wexner Medical Center. Ohio State University. Read on to learn 7 types of coughs , their causes, and natural remedies to alleviate them.
7 types of cough what they mean and remedies to relieve them
While it’s impossible to always pinpoint the causes of a cough by how it sounds, there are a few key differences to give you clues as to what’s going on. Here is how to tell what that cough really means by differentiating the following 7 most common types of cough so that you take care of it in the most due way.
Postnasal drip sounds like a dry or wet cough . It is caused by mucus dripping down the throat (due to allergies or a cold), tickling nerve endings, causing a cough, says Dr. Parsons.
Other telltale symptoms: Cough is worse at night. There is a tingling sensation in the back of your throat. If it is due to allergies, you may also have itchy eyes and sneezes.
Diagnosis and remedies
If it is due to a residual cold, to treat these common types of coughs, you can try natural remedies such as saline steam washes with HImalaya salt or sea salt to help relieve congestion. If you have postnasal drip accompanied by congestion, pressure in your face, cold symptoms that last more than 10 days, and thick green or yellow mucus, you could have an infection. See your doctor to rule out a sinus infection, which might require antibiotics.
Asthmatic cough sounds like a dry cough that ends with a rattle or wheezing . People with asthma have inflamed airways, which can cause shortness of breath, as well as wheezing and coughing.
Other telltale symptoms: Cough worsens at night or during exercise; chest tightness; difficulty breathing; fatigue
Diagnosis and remedies
To check for asthma, your doctor will likely order spirometry, a test of lung function. When your breathing is normal, you have better oxygenation of the tissues and organs. Optimizing your gut health and vitamin D levels should also be at the top of your health checklist if you are suffering from asthma.
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease GERD, a very common type of cough
It sounds like a dry, jerky cough. It’s short for gastroesophageal reflux disease, GERD, and it’s when acid from your stomach travels up into the esophagus. It is actually the second most common cause of chronic cough, causing about 40% of cases, according to a 2006 review published in Nature.
Other telltale symptoms: Your cough gets worse when you’re lying down or eating. “The classic sign is a cough that starts as soon as you go to bed at night,” says Dr. Parsons. About 75% of GERD patients with a chronic cough have no other symptoms, but if they do, they can include heartburn and hoarseness.
Diagnosis and remedies
Tests may include an X-ray of your upper GI tract and / or an endoscopy (where your doctor inserts a thin, flexible tube into your throat to examine it).
Processed foods and sugars are a surefire way to exacerbate GERD, because this only further disturbs the balance of flora in your stomach and intestines.
Eat lots of vegetables and other high-quality foods, ideally organic, unprocessed, and raw. Also, eliminate the factors that are triggers from your diet. Common culprits for this problem include alcohol, nicotine, and caffeine. Then you will need to know if you are getting enough beneficial bacteria, or bacterial flora, in your diet.
All this would help to balance your intestinal flora, which, in turn, can help eliminate, for example, H. pyloribacteria in a natural way, without having to resort to antibiotics. It will also help you to have a proper digestion and assimilate your food properly. It would be ideal, that at the same time you add probiotics in fermented foods. If you don’t usually eat fermented foods, it is recommended that you start doing so, regularly adding a probiotic of your choice to your diet. If you haven’t tried sauerkraut, we recommend the recipe below.
[irp posts = ”1744 ″ name =” Steps to make a healthy probiotic: Sauerkraut (Sauerkraut) ”]Also, as an alternative, you can take a betaine hydrochloride supplement, which you can find in health food stores without the need for a prescription. Take as much as necessary to reduce the burning sensation and after that, decrease by one capsule. It will later help you digest food better and in addition to helping you eliminate H. pylori bacteria, if you have it, and balance its symptoms.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease COPD
It sounds like a chronic cough that produces a lot of mucus, especially in the morning, says Dr. Parsons. COPD, or Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease , includes both chronic bronchitis and emphysema. The main cause is smoking.
Other telltale symptoms: Cough improves as the day progresses; shortness of breath, especially with physical activity; wheezing, fatigue and tightness in the chest.
Your doctor will usually recommend lung function tests, such as spirometry and a chest X-ray. It is essential to stop smoking. In extreme cases, you may need oxygen therapy.
It sounds like a dry cough. A group of drugs known as ACE inhibitors are commonly prescribed to treat high blood pressure; they can cause coughing in approximately 20% of patients.
Other telltale symptoms: The cough starts a few weeks after starting these medications, says Dr. Parsons.
Diagnosis and remedies
Because you should not stop blood pressure medications without your doctor’s instruction, it is important to consider that high blood pressure can also be remedied with lifestyle changes. If you are diagnosed with this disease, a change in diet will be crucial to control your levels.
One of the main causes of high blood pressure is related to a body that makes a lot of leptin and insulin due to a diet high in carbohydrates (a lot of sugar) and highly processed foods.
Taking out all this type of food is one of the main recommendations given to people who have high blood pressure. Exercising can also improve high blood pressure and heart without resorting to medication.
The pneumonia cough is the type of cough that initially sounds a dry cough that after a few days turns into a wet cough with yellow, green, and / or red or rusty mucus.
Other Telltale Symptoms: Fever, chills, shortness of breath, pain when taking deep breaths or coughing
Diagnosis and remedies to treat it
Your doctor can usually tell if you have pneumonia by listening to your chest with a stethoscope, although he or she may order an X-ray and blood tests to determine if it is viral or bacterial. Treatment for the latter is antibiotics; if it is viral, the only remedy is rest, cough medications, and chicken soup.
For these types of coughs, drinking plenty of fluids and resting when having these types of coughs is one of the ways many people can find relief from this condition. In severe cases, in young children and the elderly, this disease may require hospitalization to receive more careful fluids, oxygen therapy, and respiratory treatments. What causes pneumonia can be due to bacteria or a virus. Although antibiotics are sometimes given, they will not be effective for viral pneumonia.
Tos ferina (pertussis)
While this disease used to be extremely rare thanks to vaccines introduced in the 1940s, it is on the rise from 2012, with more than 48,000 reported cases, in the US alone.
Other Telltale Symptoms: The early symptoms are similar to the common cold: stuffy nose, runny nose, watery eyes, fever, and cough. But after a week the classic signs of coughing emerge intensely that you may vomit or turn red or blue.
Diagnosis and remedies
Whooping cough is diagnosed with blood tests and a chest X-ray. It is treated with antibiotics. If you suspect that you have acquired whooping cough, you should seek medical attention immediately, especially if it is in a young child. However, there are some natural treatments that can help (and certainly won’t hurt). For the symptoms of these types of cough it is recommended :
- Eat light foods such as vegetables, garlic soups, and herbal teas.
- Stay well hydrated.
- Use a hot air humidifier with essential oils (try basil, chypre, marjoram, thyme, winter tree, tea tree, camphor, lavender, chamomile, peppermint, or eucalyptus).
- Rest and avoid exertion.
- Heat water to boil, then add a few drops of thyme oil. The patient should inhale the steam from the container (cover the head with a towel, being careful not to burn yourself).
- Boil fresh ginger root in water for 20 minutes, then add the water to a foot bath to soak the feet for up to 20 minutes.
- For this and other types of coughs, always avoid mucus-forming foods, such as milk, flour, and eggs , as well as sugar.