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Bad cough, smoking, allergy. What is the reason for constant coughing?

Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Sumit Bhatti

ENT Specialist

Practicing since :1991

Answered : 2586 Questions

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Posted on Tue, 3 Jul 2012 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Question: bad coughI'm constantly coughing every time I'm in my house. I do smoke, own carpet, central heating, and I also own a cat to which I wasn't really allergic too. why do I constantly keep coughing nonstop?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Sumit Bhatti 2 hours later
Hi,

Thank you for your query.

1. Cough is a protective reflex. It is usually not suppressed till a cause is established.

2. I am assuming that it is a dry cough which occurs only when you are in your house (and you have not shifted or renovated your residence recently).

3. You have not mentioned your age, any co-morbid conditions and since how long you are suffering from this bad constant cough. Was there a cold or fever initially?

4. If your cough is allergic, you have to avoid the triggers that you have mentioned. vacuum the carpets or remove them for some time. Avoid sudden changes in temperature due to central heating and get it checked for fungal infestation. Have your cat taken care of by someone else temporarily.

5. I would like to add a few more causes of troublesome cough which should be ruled out;
a. Eosinphilia (by a simple blood test)
b. Any current medication (esp. anti-hypertensives)
c. Post Nasal Drip (PND due to nasal congestion or sinusitis)
d. Acid reflux (commonly seen with smoking)
e. Bronchitis (by auscultation and a chest x-ray)
f. Reactive airway (due to recent infection or allergy)

6. You may consult with a local physician to start anti-allergic medication. A cough suppressant (not a expectorant) will help control the cough. Medicated gargles and steam inhalation will help. An throat examination can help rule out local irritation. If the cough is of long duration, a chest x-ray and lung function tests may help.

I hope I have answered your query. If you have any further questions I will be available to answer them.

Regards.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Sumit Bhatti 10 hours later
sorry, I completely forgot to mention my age and other details. I'm 26, and from what I know thus far I have no severe allergies nor do I suffer from any illness; therefore I'm not under any medication what so ever. I've been smoking since I was 18. recently I moved from New York to North XXXXXXX to which I grew up in. like I mentioned before my partner happens to own a cat that I wasn't allergic to back New york. I guess I'm just worried also because my partner has mentioned that at night my breathing sounds squeaky and as if I can barely breath. is this just dry cough or could it be something more serious like minor asthma?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Sumit Bhatti 2 hours later
Hi,

Thank you for writing back.

1. If your recent change of residence coincides with the onset of the cough, you are probably allergic to something you may have been exposed to in childhood.

2. Nasal congestion and obstruction may also cause noisy breathing.

3. In Asthma, breathing out is difficult. Auscultation and Lung function tests can pick up any signs of asthma. Discuss with your physician to investigate if your cough lasts more than 4 to 6 weeks.

4. The above mentioned medications can decrease your symptoms immediately.

I hope I have answered your query. If you have any further questions I will be available to answer them.

Regards.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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