Natural remedies for coughing

Is your cough driving you crazy? Try making some of these natural remedies for coughing at home.

By Natalie Bahadur

What type of cough do you have?
Persistent coughing can be a real drag. It's annoying -- especially to those around you -- and it can really take a toll on your body. If you've suffered from a persistent cough, you know just how taxing it can be -- and how frustrating it is when you can't get rid of it!

But there are many natural remedies for coughing that will help ease the discomfort, and (hopefully) cure it for good.

 But before you hunt down these natural remedies for coughing, it's important to determine what type of cough you have. We asked naturopathic doctor Camille Nghiem-Phu about the different types of coughs and how to cure them, as well as when to seek medical attention for a persistent cough. 


Types of coughs

According to Nghiem-Phu there are two main classifications of coughs. The first is the dry, non-productive cough, where no mucus is formed. This cough can be sporadic (occurring once or twice daily to clear irritants) or spasmodic (occurring frequently with potential shortness of breath).

The second type of cough is the productive cough, where mucus and irritants from the lungs are formed during the cough. Coughing can be symptomatic of many things, Nghiem-Phu says, including the common cold, bronchitis, croup, whooping cough, pneumonia and tuberculosis. If you've got a persistent cough, be sure to check with your doctor or naturopath to diagnose what type of cough it is and how best to treat it.
 
Do you have a chronic cough?

How do you know the difference between a run-of-the-mill cough and one that's more serious and considered chronic? Nghiem-Phu says that a cough is generally considered chronic when three weeks have passed without it improving. "In the majority of cases, frequent coughing lasts one to two weeks and tapers off as the irritant or infection subsides," she says. Anything more than that is considered a chronic cough.

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