Productive Cough Cough in Adults
Home treatment of a cough in adults includes:
- Avoid respiratory irritants, such as pollution, pollen, mold, dust and chemical fumes.
- Change A/C and furnace filters regularly.
- Do not smoke and 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 Productive Cough Cough in Children
- Chang AB, Asher MI. A review of cough in children. J Asthma. 2001 Jun;38(4):299-309. 
- Irwin RS, Curley FJ. The treatment of cough. A comprehensive review. Chest. 1991 Jun;99(6):1477-84. 
- Schroeder K, Fahey T. Should we advise parents to administer over the counter cough medicines for acute cough? Systematic review of randomised controlled trials. Arch Dis Child. 2002 Mar;86(3):170-5. 
- Schroeder K, Fahey T. Systematic review of randomised controlled trials of over the counter cough medicines for acute cough in adults. BMJ. 2002 Feb 9;324(7333):329-31.