What can I give my child if he/she has a cough?
- We do not routinely recommend treating the cough with cough medicine. Cough medicine may temporarily help stop the coughing, but it does not treat the cause of the cough. If you do decide to use an over-the-counter cough medicine, please call our office during business hours to make sure it’s safe for your child. Our practice does not prescribe prescription cough medicines for children. Saline irrigation of the nose along with blowing the nose (if old enough) or suctioning has been proven to be helpful with children. Older children may be more comfortable using cough drops, cold medicines or honey in warm water or sleeping on more pillows.
What do I do if my child’s cough persists?
- A cough is usually caused by a virus, which needs to run its course. This may last for as long as 2 weeks or longer if your child has one cold immediately following another. Allergies, asthma, or other sinus infections may also cause persistent coughs. If your child’s cough lasts for 2 weeks or more, contact your doctor.
When should I call the doctor?
- Most childhood coughs are not serious enough to need medical attention and can be treated with over-the-counter or home remedies. However, contact the doctor if your child has any of the following symptoms:
- Struggling to breathe
- Trouble swallowing
- Coughing blood
- Chest pain
- Temperature of over 104° F
- Turns blue when coughing – call 911.
- Persistent cough lasting longer than 2 weeks