Treatment isn't always necessary for mild, short-term coughs because it's likely to be a viral infection that will getbetter on its own within a few weeks. You can look after yourself at home by resting, drinking plenty of fluids, and taking painkillers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen .
Although some people find them helpful,medicines that claim to suppress your cough or stop you bringing up phlegm are not usually recommended. This is becausethere's little evidence to suggest they're any more effective than simple home remedies, and they're not suitable for everyone.
The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) recommends that over-the-counter cough and cold medicines shouldn't be given to children under the age of six. Children aged 6 to 12 should only use them on the advice of a doctor or pharmacist.
Ahomemade remedy containing honey and lemon is likely to be just as useful and safer to take. Honey shouldn't be given to babies under the age of one because of the risk of infant botulism .
If your cough has a specific cause, treating this may help. For example:
If you smoke, quittingis also likely to help improve your cough. .
Read about some of the main causes or short- and long-term coughs, when to see your GP, and what treatments are available.
Some of the main causes of short-term (acute) and persistent (chronic) coughs are outlined below. Short-term coughs Common causes of a short-term cough include: an upper respiratory tract infection (
There's usually no need to see your GP if you or your childhave a mild cough for a week or two. However, you should seek medical advice if: you've had a cough for more than three weeks your cough is
Treatment isn't always necessary for mild, short-term coughs because it's likely to be a viral infection that will getbetter on its own within a few weeks. You can look after yourself at home by resti