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Coronavirus: Still coughing after Covid? How much should you worry

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Coughing as a symptom of coronavirus infection can be debilitating and linger for weeks. Find out what’s causing your cough and how to get rid of it.

It is true that not all patients with coronary heart disease will experience symptoms. However, it appears that the cough persists even a year after the coronavirus infected 2.5 percent of the population.

If you have COVID-19 and you’re still coughing, you’re more likely to end up in an awkward position every time you cough. Not only that, but you may have to avoid a lot of social interaction as well.

Natasha Yates, Assistant Professor of General Medicine at Bond University, in an article in The Conversation gives helpful tips for relieving a persistent cough, while also explaining when it is worrying.

What causes a cough?

Cough is the body’s way of eliminating “foreign” invaders, such as viruses, dust and mucus, as it must remove any irritating substance. But this is also one of the ways in which the coronavirus finds its way to spread.

Why does the cough persist?

Through inflammation, our body tries to defend itself to fight the virus. Inflamed tissues swell and produce fluid. This process can take a long time, even after the virus has been eliminated. Also of interest is the fact that even patients with mild symptoms may develop a persistent cough after the illness.

When should you worry?

Although cough is one of the symptoms of long Covid, you should first rule out other serious causes that could cause it, such as a secondary bacterial infection. 

Symptoms include:

  • changes in the type of cough or the composition of the secretions.
  • other symptoms such as fever, chest pain, palpitations or worsening of shortness of breath.

Other serious illnesses that include persistent cough are heart failure and lung cancer.

What can help you 

  • If the cough is mainly caused by metatarsal instillation (accumulation of mucus in the throat or a feeling of mucus pushing you to clear your throat), lozengessaline washesnasal sprays and sleeping in an upright position will help
  • If the source of the cough is located in the dry throat, be sure to drink water slowly, eat a few spoonfuls of honey frequently and breathe slowly through your nose.
  • If you have pneumonia, controlled breathing and inhaling steam from a humidifier will also help.

Forget antibiotics 

In the absence of secondary bacterial infection, antibiotics are considered inappropriate and may contribute to the development of antibiotic resistance.

In conclusion, if you still have doubts about the cause or progression of cough, it is worth visiting your doctor to check it.

Image Credit: Getty

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