The potential causes of a cough include: 1. Asthma 2. Nasal and sinus disease 3. An inhaled foreign body 4. Viral and respiratory tract infections 5. Stomach and esophageal problems 6. Environmental irritants 7. Habit Patients should see an allergist or immunologist if they have one or more of the following: 1. A chronic cough with nasal symptoms 2. A cough that lasts 3-8 weeks or longer 3. A cough that coexists with asthma 4. A chronic cough with tobacco use or exposure Relief is possible for almost all cough patients with the help of a professional. To determine the problem and best treatment, a thorough patient history, physical exam, and in some cases selected testing is necessary.