Should You See A Doctor If You Have A Cough That Won’t Go Away?

By the team at Speedoc,
October 19, 2020

A cough that started out of nowhere and won’t go away. It’s not because something went down the wrong pipe, nor a cold or flu. Nothing seems to have caused it but it has been going on for weeks, or even months. What makes it worse is that it’s now affecting your sleep and annoying the people around you. If this sounds like what you’re going through, you may be suffering from chronic cough.

What causes chronic cough?

For smokers, long-term smoking is usually what induces a chronic “smoker’s cough” due to the chemicals in the cigarettes. These chemicals could also lead to more severe conditions, such as pneumonia, bronchitis, or even lung cancer.

Non-smokers may still experience chronic cough, sometimes also referred to as a persistent cough. The most common causes of a persistent cough include:

  • Postnasal drip (a condition where the glands in your nose and throat produce too much mucus and you may feel it dripping down your throat from your nose)

  • Asthma

  • Acid reflux

  • Medication with ACE inhibitors (usually used in high blood pressure treatment)

The first three causes, either individually or combined, are why most adults suffer from chronic cough.

When should I worry about my persistent cough?

Your cough is considered chronic if it lasts longer than 8 weeks. Although a persistent cough is not cause for concern, you should seek medical help as soon as possible if you experience any of these symptoms:

  • Fever (especially if it’s high or prolonged)

  • Coughing up blood

  • Shortness of breath

  • Weight loss

  • Weakness or fatigue

  • Chest pain

Our house call services are available 24/7 for any other urgent medical needs as well!

How can I treat my chronic cough?

Medication used to treat persistent cough include:

  • Cough suppressants. While the exact cause of your chronic cough is being investigated, cough suppressants can help to relieve some discomfort.

  • Antihistamines, corticosteroids, and decongestants. These are used to treat allergies and postnasal drip.

  • Asthma medication (such as inhalers). Inhalers are most effective in reducing inflammation and opening airways for asthma-induced cough.

  • Acid blockers. If acid reflux has been identified as a reason for your persistent cough, lifestyle changes and medication that block acid production can help.

Your Speedoc doctor can prescribe these medications for you after a video consultation. Medication delivery is available.

If you smoke, the first step would be to quit or at least cut back on smoking. Your doctor will be able to advise on smoking cessation.

Seek medical help at home for your persistent cough

Never ignore your chronic cough, but don’t panic as well. Get the care you need at home with Speedoc’s house call doctors.

Rest and recover in peace as our doctor treats you in the safety and comfort of your home, 24/7. If you’d like to receive medical advice quickly, our telemedicine service, available 8am to 8pm daily, is a good choice.

Download the Speedoc app to schedule a doctor house call or video consultation today!