Influenza Cough in Adults
Home treatment of a cough in adults with influenza includes:
- Avoid respiratory irritants, such as pollution, pollen, mold, dust and chemical fumes
- Change A/C and furnace filters regularly.
- Stop smoking
- Avoid exposure to secondary smoke
- Drink warm liquids to relieve coughing spasms.
- Raise the head of your bed at night and sleep on your left side: this minimizes acid reflux.
- Use throat lozenges.
- Place a vaporizer or nebulizer in the bedroom at night.
- Cough medicines rarely reduce coughing.
- Cough medications that contain dextromethorphan may reduce a dry cough.
- Cough medications that contain guaifenesin (Robitussin) may make it easier to cough up phlegm.
- Guaifenesin is often combined with dextromethorphan (Robitussin-DM).
Cough medication precautions:
- A cough can help clear infected mucus from the lungs. Suppressing the cough may reduce your ability to fight the infection.
- Cough medicine can cause drowsiness. Do not take cough medication if you plan to drive or operate machinery.
- Avoid alcohol.
- Do not take cough medication if you take sedatives or medication for depression.
- Talk to your doctor before you take cough medicine if you have asthma, COPD, emphysema, heart disease or high blood pressure.
Continue to Influenza Cough in Children
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- Ebell MH, White LL, Casault T. A systematic review of the history and physical examination to diagnose influenza. J Am Board Fam Pract. 2004 Jan-Feb;17(1):1-5. 
- Flu.gov, HHS Interagency Public Affairs Group on Influenza Preparedness and Response
- Jefferson T, Smith S, Demicheli V, Harnden A, Rivetti A, Di Pietrantonj C. Assessment of the efficacy and effectiveness of influenza vaccines in healthy children: systematic review. Lancet. 2005 Feb 26-Mar 4;365(9461):773-80. 
- Montalto NJ. An office-based approach to influenza: clinical diagnosis and laboratory testing. Am Fam Physician. 2003 Jan 1;67(1):111-8. 
- Strategy for Off-Site Rapid Triage(c) (SORT) and Real-time Epidemiological Assessment for Community Health(c) (REACH), Emory University, Principal Investigators: Alexander Isakov, MD, MPH; Arthur Kellermann, MD, MPH, Collaboration with the Emory at Grady Health Literacy Team (Ruth Parker, MD; Kara Jacobson, MPH, CHES; Lorenzo DiFrancesco, MD)
- VHA Office of Public Health Surveillance and Research; Influenza Algorithm Work Group