General Infomation

A cough is the body’s normal reaction to irritation in the throat, the bronchial tubes, or the lungs .coughs are helpful because they expel mucus, bacteria, and other irritating substances from the respiratory tract. Coughing is a lifesaving reflex when something gets stuck in the throat and blocks air passages.


Usually a cough signals a viral bacterial infection, such as cold or bronchitis. The immune system causes the bronchial tubes, lungs, and throat to attack the germs and get rid of them in a coating of mucus. Coughs that produce phlegm are characteristic of respiratory infection. Coughs can also be caused by exposure to dust, cigarette smoke, polluted air, extremely dry air, or strong smells, such as that of ammonia. Coughs not caused by infection are more likely to be chronic and produce little phlegm.

A brief bout of coughing in response to an infection or exposure to dust and pollution is a sign of health. Coughing is a problem if it fails to expel the offending substance or if it becomes continuous and interferes with eating, speech, or sleep. Chronic cough is also a symptom of a number of possible disorders, including allergies, chronic bronchitis, cancer, heart disease, and tuberculosis. It can also be a side effect of certain medications, such as angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors.

Very frequently, inappropriate treatment is as detrimental as the original cause of the cough. Some of the over the counter remedies contain both a sedative that squelches the cough reflex and a stimulant that makes the lungs manufacture more phlegm. The net results is increased congestion and difficulty breathing, although less cough.

Useful treatment requires matching the remedy to the cough. Expectorants work by increasing fluid production in the respiratory tract, helping to thin and loosen mucus so that it is easier to cough out. They should not be used to treat a dry cough .other treatments for cough work by ‘’ turning off’’ the part of the brain that causes the coughing response. Still others soot colts e the throat irritation caused by chronic cough. Although herbal treatments have fewer side effects than conventional remedies, they still must be chosen by the type of cough they are intended to treat.

Unless otherwise specified, the herb dosage recommended here are for adults, and some herbs are not suitable for children at all. Children under the age of six should be given one-quarter of the adult’s dosage. Children between the ages of six to twelve should be given one-half of the adult dosage. Formula dosage for children should be discussed with a knowledgeable health-care practitioner.

Beneficial herbs
1. Coltsfoot- relieves acute congestion and hoarseness lasting no more than 2-3 days
Form and dosage
Tea bag; prepared with 1 cup water .take ½ 2-3 times not exceed the recommended dosage.

2. Echinacea – arrests both bacterial and viral infections that cause cough.
Form and dosage
Echinacea purpurea tablets; take 2,000 mg every 3 hours till symptoms improves.

3. Lobelia – relieves dry, hacking cough.
Form and dosage
Capsules; take 500 – 1000 mg 3 times daily. Take it for no more than 2 weeks at a time.

4.Lungwort – good for children who have both cough and diarrhoea.
Form and dosage
Tincture; take the dose recommended on the label 2 -3 times daily for 3 days .

5. Marshmallow root- relieves dry, hacking cough. Especially helpful for children. Also known as althea.
Form and dosage
Extract; take 1 tsp. (2ml) in ¼ cup water three times daily. For children use ¼ tsp. (0.5ml).

6. Peppermint – suppresses cough reflex.
Form and dosage
Menthol lozenges; use 1 per hour

7. Reishi – stops coughing if you have a cold and asthma at the same time.
Form and dosage
Tablets; take 3000 mg 3 times daily.

8. Slippery elm bark- coats and soothes sore throat.
Form and dosage
Tea (loose); prepared by stepping 1 tsp. in 1 cup water. Drink 1 cup as desired.

• Use essential oil of eucalyptus in aromatherapy to sooth throat irritation

• Use eucalyptus, peppermint, rosemary, and sage together as a chest rub to relieve a child’s cough and sore throat. Mix 5 drops of the essential of each herb into 3 tablespoon of olive oil and apply to the chest 3 times daily.

• Avoid eating one to two hours before bed time. Eating just before sleep may encourage the development of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), which causes some people to wake up with cough, sore throat, or hoarseness even in the absence of infection.

• To moisten the respiratory tract and thin mucus, use a cool – mist humidifier. Vaporizes and humidifier are especially useful for children sure to keep this equipment scrupulously clean so that bacteria do not collect in it.

• Avoid exposure to cigarette smoke, either first or second hand.

• If a cough persist despite attempts to sooth it, see a doctor.

• Siberian ginseng is useful in preventing coughs caused by exposure to dust and drafts. Take 1 cup of the tea (from bags) per day, or use tinctures as directed on the label. Avoid this herb if prostate cancer or an autoimmune disease, such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis, is present.

• Tobacco smoke is not the only cause of chronic cough in children. the presence of a furry pet or heating fuels such as bottled gas or paraffin also contribute to children’s cough. Eliminate as many of these sources of irritation as possible.


By Austine on 27 August 2019

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