During the change of seasons or transition, many people experience coughing. Not only for adults, coughing in children can also interfere with their daily activities.
What needs to be understood, cough is a symptom that is protective for the body. Coughing is the body’s natural effort to expel mucus or foreign matter from the lungs and blocked air flow.
Efforts to remove mucus
As long as a cough in a child does not cause eating, drinking, breathing problems, and no accompanying wheezing sounds, there is actually no need to worry. Although it may seem annoying at first glance, coughing is actually useful for cleaning phlegm or phlegm from inside the chest or the back of the throat. Some of the causes of cough in children include:
- The flu often triggers a cough reaction as the body’s natural effort to remove mucus from the back of the throat.
- Bacterial or viral infections, such as ARI in children, can also trigger a cough accompanied by shortness of breath and fever.
- Asthma symptoms. Characterized by a cough that occurs for a long time, after a child is running around or a cough that appears / worsens at night. This type of cough is also often accompanied by wheezing or shortness of breath.
- Air or environmental factors. Cigarette smoke or being around pets can make a child cough.
Some coughs in children are caused by viruses. Viral infections can last up to two weeks. Avoid using antibiotics to treat this condition because it is not effective in eradicating the virus.
During the child’s sleep time is not interrupted, no medication is needed to cough. For children under 6 years old, it is not recommended to take over-the-counter cough medicines without consulting a doctor.
When a child coughs, parents can help the child feel more comfortable, namely by:
- Keeping the body of the child gets enough fluids. Warm tea, warm lemon juice with honey can help prevent dehydration while dealing with a dry throat. But avoid honey in children aged less than one year.
- If coughing occurs constantly, take advantage of hot water vapor. Try sitting with your child while the child breathes in steam from a bowl of hot water for about 20 minutes. Or you can take your child outside the house to breathe fresh air for about 10-15 minutes.
- If available, use an air humidifier in your child’s coughing room. Turn it on before the child sleeps.
If your child’s cough is caused by asthma, ask your doctor about a plan for treating asthma that is right for the child. Always provide asthma medication that is needed in your reach. Never give leftover antibiotics or have other family members drink for your coughing child. If the doctor gives medicine for a child’s cough, make sure you follow the instructions correctly.
Be Wary If Other Symptoms Are Accompanied
If other symptoms occur that accompany the cough, immediately consult a doctor or take the child to the nearest health unit to get help as soon as possible. For example if symptoms occur:
- Difficulty breathing or breathing faster than usual.
- The fever is getting worse.
- Pale or blue on the lips, tongue, or face.
- Fever and cough occur in infants younger than three months.
- Breath sounds after coughing.
- The child looks weak, fussy, and uncomfortable.
- Dehydration is characterized by dry mouth, dizziness, drowsiness, crying without tears, sunken eyes, and fewer urination.
Coughing with blood.
How to Prevent Cough and Treat Cough in Children
It is not easy to prevent coughing in children, but there are several ways you can do to minimize transmission.
In the flu season, you can invite children to wash their hands often to prevent the spread of the virus. Ask an adult at your child’s activity area to do the same thing. Then, don’t let your children approach people who have cough flu.
Prohibit smokers from around the house or the place of activity of children. Being a passive smoker for children can cause him to face various health risks besides coughing, including asthma, allergies, colds, and others.
Pay attention to the child’s vaccination schedule. Make sure your child gets diphtheria vaccination, whooping cough, pertussis / tetanus (DPT). If necessary, ask your doctor to give you a special flu shot.
Coughing as the body’s natural response to expel mucus or other foreign matter, must be addressed appropriately. Take care at home to help relieve children’s breathing, cough medicine for children according to the type of cough and age can also be used to help relieve symptoms, especially cough medicines with variations in taste that children like can facilitate drug delivery in children. However, if the cough does not heal and other symptoms arise that are dangerous, do not hesitate to immediately seek medical help.