(Last Updated on : 28-06-2017)
Cough is the most common type of respiratory diseases. It is a common reflex action that clears the throat of mucus or foreign irritants. Although it can be annoying, coughing helps the body heal or protect itself. Cough is often accompanied by a distinctive sound and coughing can happen voluntarily as well as involuntarily.
Causes of Cough
There are numerous causes of cough. Cough is considered as a symptom of various diseases like common cold
, pertussis, tuberculosis
, etc. Cough can be caused due to an acute exacerbation of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Post-nasal drip, gastro-oesophageal reflux disease, asthma
, post viral cough and ACE inhibitors, etc. are some of the common causes of chronic dry coughing. The other causes of cough include respiratory infection, bronchitis
, viral infection, bacterial infection, fungal infection, wheezing, inhaled irritant, allergies
, gastric reflux, etc.
Apart from the above mentioned ones; there are a few other causes of cough also. These are smoker's cough, emphysema, lung cancer
, exposure to noxious gases, inhaled foreign body, dust, smog, carcinoma, broncho-pneumonia (type of Pneumonia), pulmonary tuberculosis
, lung fibrosis, etc. Atopic cough and eosinophilic-bronchitis are also considered as causes of cough. However, coughs are most commonly caused by respiratory infections.
Symptoms of Cough
Numerous symptoms are there for identifying cough. The symptoms of cough usually depend on the underlying cause. The most common symptoms of cough include nasal congestion, headache
, or postnasal drip from acute or chronic sinusitis
; wheezing from asthma; fever, chills, night sweats from bronchitis, pneumonia, tuberculosis, or other lung infection; blood in the sputum or unintentional weight loss
from lung cancer; chest pain, shortness of breath, etc.
Types of Cough
Cough can be of different types. Each type of cough is different from other types and it could help indicate what illness a person has, as well. There are four distinct types of cough: dry cough, wet cough, croup cough and whooping cough.
Treatment of Cough
Coughs can be treated through various treatment methods. The alternative treatment methods like Ayurveda
, etc. are used quite frequently to in treatment of cough. The other procedures like nature care
, various Yoga Asanas
and dietary supplements, herbs, etc. are also used in treatment of cough.
Most of the times, cough is an indication of a disease. However, sometimes cough itself can be considered as disease. Taking necessary preventive actions and treating cough at the right time, can lessen sufferings from cough.