A Guide To Coughs In The Time Of Covid
For centuries, doctors and caregivers have listened to the different types of cough in search of clues to help diagnose underlying disease.
Coughs are a valuable diagnostic tool, but how do you know if youve got a relatively harmless cough, a coronavirus cough or something else altogether?
An occasional cough is healthy, but one that persists for weeks, produces bloody mucus, causes changes in phlegm colour or comes with fever, dizziness or fatigue may be a sign you need to see a doctor.
How To Treat A Cough From Coronavirus At Home
If you have coronavirus and mild symptoms, chances are youre isolating at home. The good news is that the recovery rate is positive, at 80%. The bad news is that youre likely struggling with one or more of the main symptoms, which include fever, shortness of breath and a severe dry cough.
These symptoms can appear two to 14 days after exposure, according to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . The CDC advises that most people will have symptoms for a few days and get better after about a week. People who are sick should drink lots of fluids to stay hydrated, get lots of rest and take steps to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, says the CDC.
What Other Coronavirus Symptoms Should I Look Out For
The other key coronavirus symptom is a high temperature.
According to the NHS, this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back .
Other symptoms include shortness of breath, headaches, aches and pains, sore throat and fatigue.
There have also been reports that digestive issues and loss of taste and smell can be early symptoms of coronavirus.
Head to our and let us know if youre affected.
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What About Whooping Cough
Whooping cough is caused by bacterial infection that affects cells in the airways and causes irritation and secretion.
Symptoms include coughing fits that end in a loud, “breathing in” noise that often sounds like a long “whoop” and leaves you gasping for air. Mucus is often expelled.
Prolonged, forceful coughing can damage your airways, or cause rib fractures or muscle tears so it’s important to know when medical help is required.
So whatever your cough sounds like, keep an eye on it and see a doctor if it doesn’t go away or gets worse.
Causes Of A Wet Cough
Some typical causes of a wet cough include:
A respiratory infection
A wet cough often occurs as a result of a respiratory infection. Various types of respiratory infection can lead to an increase in mucus, including:
- the common cold
- tightness in the chest
Congestive heart failure
Congestive heart failure occurs when the heart has difficulty pumping blood throughout the body. When this ineffective pumping occurs on the left side of the heart, it causes fluid to leak into the air sacs within the lungs. The result is a wet cough, crackles, and wheezing.
According to the , CHF may produce pink tinged mucus. Some additional symptoms may include:
- shortness of breath
- swelling of the legs or feet, due to right sided heart failure causing poor circulation
What Is The Cough Like With Coronavirus
The NHS has stated that a persistent cough means coughing a lot for more than an hour.
Also, three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours also counts as a persistent cough.
Meanwhile, a dry cough means its tickly and doesnt produce any phlegm .
Health bosses also point out that if you usually have a cough, coronavirus may make your cough worse than usual.
Coronavirus survivor Calum Wishart, who is still recovering in hospital, recently discussed in detail what his cough was like.
The coughing is so aggressive that it causes severe pain all over your chest and can induce vomiting and diarrhoea, he told the Daily Record.
Days after developing the cough, he started struggling to breathe and felt like his lungs were struggling to expand.
He was then taken to hospital after collapsing while gasping for breath.
You breathe so rapidly and youre just desperately trying to catch a breath back, you end up panicking and it makes everything worse, he added.
I want everyone to take this seriously and understand the severity of it.
Wet & Phlegmy Or Dry & Hacking
A wet cough brings up phlegm from the lower respiratory tract into the mouth.
The ‘wet’ sound is caused by the fluid in the airways and can be accompanied by a wheezing sound when breathing in. The lower airways have more secretory glands than your throat, which is why lower respiratory tract infections cause a wet cough.
A dry cough doesnt produce phlegm. It usually starts at the back of the throat and produces a barking or coarse sound. A dry cough does not clear your airways so sufferers often describe it as an unsatisfactory cough.
Nose and throat infections cause irritation to those areas and produce a hacking dry cough with sore throat. These types of cough are often seen in flu or cold.
Sometimes a cough can start off dry but eventually turn wet.
For example, the lung infection pneumonia often begins with a dry cough thats sometimes painful and can cause progressive shortness of breath. As infection progresses, the lung air sacs can fill up with inflammatory secretions such as lung tissue fluid and blood, and then the cough will become wet. At this stage, sputum becomes frothy and blood-tinged.
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About Author: Ken Harris
Ken Harris is the proudest father and a writing coordinator for the Marketing & Communications division of OSF HealthCare.He has a bachelor’s in journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and worked as a daily newspaper reporter for four years before leaving the field and eventually finding his way to OSF HealthCare.In his free time, Ken likes reading, fly fishing, hanging out with his dog and generally pestering his lovely, patient wife.
Biden Begs Americans To Get Vaxxed As Us Covid Deaths Hit ‘painful Milestone’
The difference between a mild cold and the deadly coronavirus may come down to what type of cough you have.
The flu-like disease has infected more than 100,000 people globally, killed more than 3,000 and thrown everything from the stock market to the travel industry into chaos as fears of its spread worsen. Adding to the uncertainty of its toll: the fact that its symptoms are so similar to everyday illnesses.
People are worried, for rightful reasons, says Dr. Waleed Javaid, director of infection prevention and control at Mount Sinai Downtown.
While a fever is the most common symptom of coronavirus , about two-thirds of patients get a cough specifically a dry cough, according to the World Health Organization .
A dry cough is what we call a non-productive cough, because no phlegm is brought up, Javaid tells The Post. It is usually characterized by a scratchy throat.
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Read Ourcoronavirus Live Blog For The Latest News & Updates
Members of the public have been warned to look out for a dry persistent cough – one of the key symptoms of Covid-19.
Although as the virus mutates and new variants arrives, symptoms are also presenting differently, so it’s not only a cough you need to look out for now.
If you’ve been vaccinated and have picked up the Delta variant, the dominant virus in the UK, symptoms can often present as cold-like – a sore throat, headache and runny nose.
If you are experiencing symptoms of the virus it’s imperative that you get a test.
You can book a test online if you are experiencing symptoms, or if someone you live with has displayed them.
The government advises to get a test done in the first five days of having symptoms.
Here, we take you through this main symptom and how to protect yourself and your family.
Who: Type Of Cough May Differentiate Coronavirus From Cold
Spotting the difference between influenza and coronavirus
Dr. Jen Caudle joins Good Day Weekend to discuss the difference between influenza and coronavirus.
PHILADELPHIA – As coronavirus continues to spread around the Delaware Valley and worldwide, it is important to educate yourself on the signs and symptoms of the virus. Dr. Jen Caudle joined Good Day Weekend on Sunday to elaborate on new information from the World Health Organization.
Dr. Caudle, a family physician and associate professor at Rowan University, says health officials believe the type of cough a patient is experiencing could be a good indicator of their illness. Citing research released by the World Health Organization, Dr. Caudle says a dry cough is frequently found in COVID-19 cases.
Dr. Caudle says a dry cough is just that — dry — there is no phlegm or mucus present that is typically found in a wet cough. Additionally, Dr. Caudle says wet coughs are accompanied by “rattling” or “wheezing.”
Of course, Dr. Caudle stressed that a dry cough is merely a common symptom of the coronavirus. Just because someone has a dry cough does not mean they have the coronavirus. Likewise, people with wet coughs could still be symptomatic for COVID-19.
While a fever remains the most common symptom of the virus, according to the World Health Organization more that 67% of patients experience a dry cough.
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The Most Scary Symptom Of Covid
“A healthy body will help post Covid patients overcome even mental trauma,” shared Physio Anant Singh, Senior Physiotherapist at AYUSH Department.
Dr. Anant Singh, along with Physio Anubha Singhai, Director, PhysiQure Healthcare, has come up with some effective breathing exercises for post covid patients for a healthier body.
While talking to The Pioneer, he said, “The most scary symptom of Covid 19 is wet cough. Our lungs get effected during Covid and hence, it becomes even more important to clear them out during recovery time.”
He shared, ” For this, NHS recommends Active Cycles of Breathing Techniques to help improve air entry in the lungs and force out secretions. It is a combination of 3 basic steps to clear chest.”
The breathing exercises include three simple steps. First is ‘Breathing Control’. Breathing control helps relax the airways. Patient should breathe in through your nose and out through the mouth with very little effort. Use normal, gentle breathing with the lower chest while relaxing the upper chest and shoulders.
Next step is Thoracic Expansion Exercises Breath in deeply and try to hold for 3 seconds followed by expiration. Put your hand on different parts of the chest to feel the expansion. Repeat 3-4 times before next step.
The last step is Forced Expiration . Take a medium-sized breath and breath out forcefully with partially opened lips. Repeat 3-4 times till mucus is cleared.
How To Tell If You Have Covid
COVID-19 generally causes a dry cough that leaves you gasping for air. If you have shortness of breath and muscle pain, you may have a COVID-19 cough. The most typical symptoms of coronavirus are a fever with a cold or flu-like feeling, persistent dry cough, body ache, fatigue, and in severe cases, loss of smell and taste. Coronavirus attacks a person’s respiratory system, infecting the lungs and their tissues. As the virus spreads, it fills the lung tissue with fluid, causing the body to struggle for oxygen, resulting in pneumonia-like coughing and difficulties breathing. Most coughs cure up within a week, but if you’ve been coughing for more than a week, see your doctor. If a person coughs continuously for more than an hour or has three or four such coughing episodes in a day, they may be infected with the coronavirus. If you already have a cough, being infected with coronavirus may aggravate it and lead to serious complications.
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Dealing With A Dry Cough
- Stay well hydrated.
- Sip a soft drink take small sips, one after the other and avoid taking large sips.
- Use steam inhalation pour hot water into a bowl and put your head over the bowl. If comfortable, cover your head and bowl with a towel. Do not use boiling water with small children to avoid the risk of scolding.
- Drink warm honey and lemon or another warm drink this can help to soothe the throat.
- If you do not have a drink to hand, but need to cough, try swallowing repeatedly. This can work in a similar way to sipping water.
When A Cough May Be More Than Just A Cough
Find a primary care provider thats right for you
As a person with any amount of life experience under your belt, you likely dont need the term cough defined for you. Youve probably experienced a recurring cough at least once in your life, if not countless times. Sometimes the cough goes away after a short time all by itself. Sometimes the cough is a symptom of an illness.
So, when should you worry about your childs cough? Whats the difference between a wet cough and a dry cough?
Keith Hanson, MD, is a pediatric hospitalist at OSF HealthCare Childrens Hospital of Illinois in Peoria. His insights can help you identify the type of cough your child is experiencing, and what other symptoms to look for to help you know whether you should call your childs pediatrician.
A cough by itself is not very worrisome, really, Dr. Hanson said. But if it is accompanied by other symptoms of illness, it can help you identify when its time to call your childs pediatrician.
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Coronavirus Or Allergies How To Spot The Difference
A wet cough, on the other hand, produces mucus and can feel like rattling in ones chest. It can also cause a person to wheeze. This may be a symptom of something more benign, such as a cold or allergies. Bronchitis and pneumonia also often come with a wet cough, Javaid says.
Other, less common symptoms of coronavirus include mucus production meaning a smaller portion of people with the disease had a so-called wet cough.
A cough in itself is a concern, but a dry cough would make it a higher concern, Javaid says. More importantly, a cough in addition to a persistent fever should raise a red flag. Combination of symptoms is more important. Any kind of cough and fever would be very concerning.
Additional symptoms include shortness of breath , a sore throat and a headache , according to the WHO.
Supporting You To Recover After Covid
This content may not be reproduced, without the permission of Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust – .
A dry cough is one of the most common reported symptoms of COVID-19, however, in some cases it may be productive of phlegm a wet or chesty cough. Following COVID-19 you may find that you have a cough and phlegm on your chest.
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You Can’t Smell Or Taste Your Favorite Foods And Drinks
There are dozens of symptoms that have been linked to COVID, some of which are seemingly innocuous. But one of the most telling ones is a loss of taste or smell, which is distinctly associated with COVID and not a cold, flu, or allergies. “If you have a cough with other COVID-19 symptoms like loss of taste or smell, that would increase the likelihood that you have COVID-19,” says Favini.
The easiest, most foolproof way to know if your cough is from COVID, though, is getting a COVID test. “Ultimately, because of the spectrum of illness COVID-19 can cause and the prevalence around the country, testing is really needed to determine whether your cough may be COVID-19,” says Favini. “If you’re having a cough, you should act like you have COVID-19 by isolating, wearing a mask, and getting a test.” And for the only safe zone in terms of COVID infection, check out This Is the Only Time Someone With COVID Can’t Get You Sick, Doctor Says.
/8try Some Breathing Exercises:
Patients of COVID have shown problems in breathing during the post recovery. In order to bring your focus back on your breathing, try out some quick exercises. You can take 5 seconds to inhale and 10 seconds to exhale. You can slowly build your tolerance and increase the difficulty. You should focus on your breathing so that you can keep your nose and throat clear of phlegm.
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You Have A Fever And Are Feeling Achey
Another distinction between allergies and COVID? A fever, one of the tell-tale signs your body is responding to a virus. While the flu also tends to come with a fever, according to Narayan, allergies and the common cold usually do not, so at least that rules out two potential illnesses.
If your cough is “associated with fever muscle aches call your health care provider to see if you should be tested for COVID,” Poston warns. And for more useful information on COVID delivered straight to your inbox, .
Maintaining A Good Covid
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A cough is usually associated with a number of habits, health conditions and upper respiratory tract infections, including the common cold, asthma, smoking and, of course, COVID-19. Even at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, one of the three basic symptoms of this viral infection identified by the World Health Organization was a cough.
It was assumed around March 2020 that the cough associated with COVID-19 is dry, but subsequent research studies showed that some COVID-19 patients had a wet or phlegm-filled cough. A study published in The Lancet in July 2020, for example, came to the conclusion that many patients can develop a phlegmatic cough days after getting the infection, and even during hospitalization.
This means that a patient recovering from COVID-19 could have either a dry or a wet cough to deal with. Managing the cough, clearing it out properly and being able to breathe freely again is a big part of the recovery process that every COVID-19 patient has to go through. Maintaining a good COVID-19 recovery diet packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants can surely help deal with the cough to some extent. Here are a few tips recommended by the UKs National Health Service that can help you manage both types of cough as you recover from COVID-19.
Tips to manage a dry cough
A dry cough can put a lot of strain on your throat and make sleep next to impossible. Cover your mouth when you cough and wash your hands with soap and water frequently.
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