I have a 7-month-old who has had a cough for 1.5 months now. I had him to the Dr after three weeks and we tried a course of Amoxicillin for 10 days but it didn’t clear up the cough totally.
The Dr thought he may have allergies, so we are trying a cold mist humidifier in our bedroom at night. He continues to cough and is congested in the morning. He coughs up phlegm in the morning. I have also sprayed an allergy spray on our blankets, carpets, and pillows to alleviate some allergens.
What other home remedies should I try?
Reasons & Remedies for Chronic Cough in Baby
6 weeks of persistent cough is a long time for a baby and you did the right thing to seek advice after three weeks. Unfortunately, the Amoxicillin didn’t help and it is now time for the next step.
First of all, do you know what triggered the cough in the first place? Did your son have a cold? Sometimes a cough can stay for a long time after any other symptoms of a cold have disappeared and as long as the child isn’t showing other signs of illness, it is not much to worry about.
Possible reasons for Chronic Cough in Babies
But there are other possible causes for chronic cough as well:
- Some sort of allergy can result in a chronic cough in babies just as older children. including allergies. Cow’s milk allergy can, for example, give a cough.
- Infections in the sinus (sinusitis). Together with allergies, sinusitis is the most common reason for chronic cough in babies
- Something to watch out for is Bronchiolitis caused by the dreaded respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), which you probably heard of. This virus causes a simple cold in kids older than 3 years, but it can be very dangerous and even life.threatening for babies as it can penetrate their lungs. Again, your baby seems to be way too healthy for this to be a reason!
- Nasal congestion due to sinus infections may be causing mucus-producing cough in babies. In that case, the mucus does not come from the chest, but rather drips down from the nose and makes the baby cough to evacuate it.
- Acid reflux. The most common acid reflux symptoms are more related to excessing vomiting and pain, but the chronic cough can be a symptom too.
- Asthma. Most asthma also results in wheezing, but not necessarily. Does your baby cough while asleep too? That could indicate asthma.
- Some sort of blockage – is it possible that your baby #breathed in something, that is now stuck? It is probably unlikely for this long time, but some type of smaller blockage could result in a chronic cough too.
- Whooping cough is another possible reason for persistent coughing, but your baby should be quite ill in such a case.
- Cystic Fibrosis – a rare disease that is tested for in on newborns also leads to chronic cough. If your baby is also experiencing poor weight gain, despite eating normally, is often constipated and has a salty taste to his skin, running a simple test for cystic fibrosis might be a reasonable thing to do. But if your baby has already tested for this and is overall healthy and thriving, this too is nothing to worry about!
How to Help Baby with Chronic Cough
I really don’t think you should settle with “maybe allergy” as an answer from your son’s doctor. Require further investigation!
What you can do at home in addition to the humidifier are to:
- Raise the head end of your son’s bed to ease his breathing at night.
- Use only a very mild washing powder, soap, and shampoo.
- Sometimes a warm bath in humid, moist air can help. Try it before bedtime to see if it makes him sleep better.
- Think back if you bought any particular flowers or plants before the cough started. Then check if any of them are very allergenic, and in such case get rid of them.
- A chronic cough can also be a symptom of cow’s milk allergy, so if you have introduced cow’s milk to your son, consider reversing that and see if it helps.(You can read more about the symptoms of milk protein allergy here.)
- If any allergies run in the family, discuss those with the doctor as well.
- You can also give your baby some probiotics suitable for babies, to help to boost his immune system.
Otherwise, I believe your baby will outgrow the cough sooner or later.
I hope this helps,
More Coughing Babies
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