Coughing May Be a Serious Sign

According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI), waking up coughing or having a prolonged cough that lasts for weeks should receive serious medical attention. Alan Goldsobel of AAAAI explains, "Coughing protects the body by removing mucus and irritating particles from the respiratory tract. Coughing is a useful function that does not always mean there is a problem. However, coughing at night, after going to sleep indicates the need for medical attention."

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.


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