A chronic cough can be troublesome for anyone. When you are coughing frequently, it can make your throat feel raw, it can be painful to swallow, and you may find yourself frequently getting short of breath during a coughing fit. When you have a chronic cough that lasts longer than eight weeks, it is important to get it checked by a knowledgeable physician. There are several common causes of chronic cough that should be treated.
Asthma can cause a chronic cough. You may believe that you are short of breath because you are coughing, but in actuality you are coughing because your airways are constricting and you aren’t getting enough air. Asthma is often diagnosed in childhood and young adulthood, but many older adults can also develop asthma. Asthma should be evaluated and treated immediately, even in mild cases, so that symptoms do not worsen or become life threatening. The allergy and immunology specialists at our office can diagnose and treat your asthma.
Post Nasal Drainage
Coughing can be triggered by post nasal drainage. Such chronic drainage is often the result of environmental allergies. Allergic rhinitis, or hay fever, is the most common cause of post nasal drainage. Even if you have never had allergy symptoms in the past, it is possible to develop allergic rhinitis at any stage of life. Allergy testing can be performed in our office to accurately diagnose allergies and select the best treatment options.
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)
Acid reflux from the stomach or GERD is a common digestive problem that can lead to chronic coughing. GERD often, but not always, is associated with a burning sensation in the upper abdomen, middle chest, and/or throat. Acid reflux that reaches the throat, called laryngopharyngeal reflux, can cause inflammation or irritation in this area contributing to a chronic cough. Our office can help diagnose and treat this condition.
Other common causes of chronic cough that need to be addressed by your doctor include smoking.
If you have had a chronic cough that has lasted longer than eight weeks or is affecting your quality of life, contact us today for an appointment for a complete assessment. We will do our best to find the cause of your cough and administer the correct treatment.