Cough is a natural defensive reflex that allows phlegm or irritants to be expelled respiratory tract, recalls the Health Insurance (source 1). It is a symptom (and not a disease) that can take different forms: acute cough, chronic cough, dry cough or wet cough… It is the latter that interests us today. . How to recognize and relieve it? We take stock.
Definition: what is a wet cough? What symptoms should alert?
wet cough, called “productive”, is characterized by a significant accumulation of mucus in the bronchi. It occurs most often in case of infection.
His goal ? Free the airways by clearing them of mucus and other cumbersome secretions. This not only makes it easier to breathe, but also speeds healing by flushing out viruses and other bacteria trapped in the mucus.
Present on exertion or at restday or night, it can manifest itself in the form of more or less long fits, difficult to stop and sometimes painful.
When coughing, the sick person expectorates sputum more or less thick, yellowish or greenish in color, and sometimes streaked with blood.
A wet cough can also be accompanied by several symptoms:
Acute, subacute or chronic cough?
- If the cough lasts less than three weeks, it is called cough is acute.
- If the cough lasts between three and eight weeks, it is called subacute cough.
- If the cough continues beyond eight weeks, it is called chronic cough.
Dry or wet cough: what are the differences?
A dry cough is said to be irritative or non-productive. Oily cough, unlike dry cough, is productive: it allows patients to expel cumbersome secretions.
Causes: what can cause a wet cough?
As noted above, wet cough is most often manifested in case ofENT or respiratory viral infections :
More rarely, pertussis, pneumonia or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) can also trigger a wet cough.
Treatment: how to calm and cure a very oily cough?
Wet cough should not be “removed” at all costs. As we explained to you above, it allows our body to evacuate pathogens from our respiratory tract. However, several solutions can be used to relieve it in order to gain comfort on a daily basis.
Wet cough: good daily reflexes.
- Hydrate enough – and throughout the day;
- Ventilate your interior at least ten minutes a day, morning and evening;
- If necessary, use a air humidifier ;
- Hold a temperature close to 19 degrees in your room and limit the heating there;
- Blow your nose regularly using disposable tissues to evacuate problematic secretions;
- Wash your nose several times a day using physiological serum, a solution of thermal water or sea water;
- Limit tobacco consumption and contact with irritating substances : dust, fumes from paints, candles, etc. :
- Rest as much as possible ;
What are the most effective drugs for wet cough?
Let’s be clear, cough medicines are often not very effective or even harmful.
In case of wet cough, antitussives are strongly contraindicated. They are reserved for dry and irritating coughs.
However, the doctor can prescribe bronchial thinners in the form of syrups (sometimes tablets). As their name suggests, they make it possible to thin the mucus and reduce its viscosity to facilitate their elimination. However, they are not unanimous and a simple saline solution (nose wash or gargle) can do the trick.
Taking antibiotics is usually unnecessarysince a wet cough is often a sign of a viral infection that goes away on its own.
In case of fever, bet on analgesic-antipyretic drugs.
What are the natural remedies for wet cough?
Many natural alternatives can relieve wet cough:
- Of the inhalations based on simple salt water, chamomile or eucalyptus;
- embrocations with eucalyptus oil for example (massage on the thorax or upper back);
- Honey consumption, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. Remember to add some to sweeten your dishes and drinks;
- Herbal teas, infusions and teas (with strong moisturizing power).
- essential oils thyme, niaouli, eucalyptus, peppermint or ravintsara.
Are you coughing because of an infectious disease? Respect barrier gestures to limit transmission!
To avoid infecting your loved ones, do not derogate from barrier gestures : cough promotes the spread of contaminated secretions!
Cough and blow your nose into tissues or your elbow
When you sneeze or cough, remember to cover your mouth and nose with a disposable handkerchief (which you will therefore throw in a trash can). If you don’t have a handkerchief, cough or sneeze into your elbow.
Wash your hands regularly with soap
Wash your hands regularly with soap for at least 30 seconds remembering to rub between your fingers and under your fingernails (especially after blowing your nose or coughing into your hands). If necessary, use a hydroalcoholic solution.
Ventilate and clean your interior regularly
Regularly clean the objects you use most often, such as your laptop, computer keyboard, door handles, remote controls, etc.
Also remember to ventilate your rooms at least once a day, 10 to 15 minutes.
Do not share your personal belongings and limit contact
Do we really need to remember it? Avoid sharing your personal belongings when you are sick: bath towels, toothbrush, cutlery, etc.
Also avoid contact with fragile people, the elderly, children and babies (no hugs, handshakes, etc.). If applicable, wear a mask and keep your distance.
When to worry about a wet cough? And if it persists?
Make an appointment with your doctor as soon as possible if:
- your wet cough persists for more than three weeks;
- your wet cough is accompanied by warning symptoms, such as fever, blood-tinged sputum, vomiting, severe fatigue, etc.;
- your coughing episodes are frequent and disabling in your daily life, even preventing you from sleeping;
- your mucus has been purulent for more than two days, foamy or even bloody.
If the cough is accompanied by respiratory distress or chest paincontact the emergency room (15 or 112).
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