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Doctor insights on: Cough Suppressant Medication

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How can a nighttime cough medication be both a cough suppressant and an expectorant?

How can a nighttime cough medication be both a cough suppressant and an expectorant?

In the lungs nothing: Between the lungs (in the "mediastinum") there is a proliferation of scar tissue that can lead to coonstriction of the large central vessels and airways leading into the lung. The cause is often blamed on a fungal infection, but in some people the cause is unknown. ...Read more

Dr. Sue Ferranti
3,613 Doctors shared insights

Cough (Definition)

The cough reflex is a protective mechanism that uses muscles in your throat and chest to expel mucous and saliva that may contain pathogens that would otherwise possibly be inhaled via aerosol or to expel pathogens infecting the throat and respiratory system. Cough benefits the host by reducing load and benefits the pathogen which may then spread via aerosol. ...Read more


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Please recommend a cough suppressant for a baby?

Please recommend a cough suppressant for a baby?

Not for anyone!: Cough medicines, in study after study over the last 27 years, have been proven ineffective & can have some bad side effects. This is why the fda has finally started taking them off the market! Saline nose drops & suction, elevating the head of the mattress, & a cool mist humidifier work much better, & without the side effects. If this doesn't help enough, please have your baby's doctor check him/her. ...Read more

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What is the best nonprescription cough suppressant?

What is the best nonprescription cough suppressant?

Honey: The best nonprescription cough suppressant shown to be successful in studies and even endorsed by the american academy of pediatrics is honey! ...Read more

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Left over cough from bronchitis that's been gone for 2 or 3 weeks, still have the cough. Will a regular cough suppressant work for now?

Left over cough from bronchitis that's been gone for 2 or 3 weeks, still have the cough. Will a regular cough suppressant work for now?

Yes: It's not unusual for a cough to last for 4-6 weeks after a bout of bronchitis. Over the counter cough suppressants are good to take to control your symptoms. Drink plenty of liquids. Honey can help soothe your throat if it becomes inflamed from the coughing. ...Read more

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What are the differences between a cough suppressant and an expectorant?

What are the differences between a cough suppressant and an expectorant?

Stops vs thins: An expectorant is a medicine that thins out mucous, making it easier to mobilize and get out. Usually you'll see Guaifenesin as the active ingredient. A cough suppressant stops the body from wanting to cough. This can be ok at night, since you're not supposed to cough anyways, but not a good idea during the day, so mucous keeps moving. Of course, neither is ok for children until at least 4 to 6 y. ...Read more

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What is better at night - cough suppressant or expectorant?

What is better at night - cough suppressant or expectorant?

Depends...: The cough etiology needs to be diagnosed so that it can be treated. Neither an expectorant nor suppressant treats the underlying etiology and both can be harmful in certain situations. So, you need to be evaluated by your doctor to determine the etiology of your cough and to render appropriate therapy. If you smoke, you need to quit to decrease airway inflammation, a contributing factor. ...Read more

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Can I give my 3 1/2 year old cold medicine with a cough suppressant in it.?

Can I give my 3 1/2 year old cold medicine with a cough suppressant in it.?

No: Neither cold or cough medications are recommended for children of this age due to potential serious side effects up to and including rare death. ...Read more

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What is an effective over the counter cough suppressant for the common cold?

What is an effective over the counter cough suppressant for the common cold?

Dextromethorphan: Dextromethorphan. Often combined with other products to help with other symptoms. ...Read more

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What is the most effective cough suppressant? Would numbing type like benzocaine help as well?

OTC or Rx?: Over the counter, dextromethorphan is probably the best cough suppressant available. Just be sure the one you buy doesn't contain other ingredients, particularly expectorants which make you cough more. Prescription medication such as Codeine also quite effective. Numbing medications will not help at all and taking those for cough could be dangerous, putting you at risk for aspiration. ...Read more

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When taking a cough suppressant should you always take an expectorant? I've seen & been told mixed answers. Thanks

When taking a cough suppressant should you always take an expectorant? I've seen & been told mixed answers. Thanks

No!: An expectorant helps loosen the mucus and make it less sticky so you can cough it out more readily. On the other hand, a cough suppressant suppresses your lungs ability to cough and get rid of the mucus! You may ask yourself why package them together in the same pill or liquid? That's due to our Republican Congress not wanting to interfere with the greatest medical system in the world. ...Read more

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My baby is 9 mo's old, and is with the common cold for more than 4 weeks. Is it ok to give him some cough suppressant?

My baby is 9 mo's old, and is with the common cold for more than 4 weeks. Is it ok to give him some cough suppressant?

Evaluation needed: Diagnosing and treating cough in infants is especially challenging. The typical "cold" should only last about 7-10 days. If a cough is persisting beyond that time, it is reasonable to have an evaluation, as other considerations such as asthma could be an issue. Cough suppressants are not recommended for infants. The cause of the cough should be addressed first. ...Read more

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A general question- is it ok to take cough suppressant medicine when you have mucus comng out when coughing. I.e you will be leaving mucus inside chest?

A general question- is it ok to take cough suppressant medicine when you have mucus comng out when coughing. I.e you will be leaving mucus inside chest?

It depends: You do want to expectorate mucous especially if it is copious and there is any difficulty clearing it but sometimes the cough is so frequent and debilitating that the balance tips in favor of suppressing it. Mucous perceived to be from the can actually be in the throat which is often the case. ...Read more

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Please explain why does dextromethorphan (dxm) taken as a cough suppressant cause my cough to get worse?

Please explain why does dextromethorphan (dxm) taken as a cough suppressant cause my cough to get worse?

Cough: Dextromehtorphan and medicines that help, loosen the mucous, (mucolytic agents,)these act as expectorants, that is the reason for a short time people cough more, unlike suppressant s. ...Read more

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What is the best cough expectorant? I don't want a cough suppressant because I want to get the mucous out.

What is the best cough expectorant? I don't want a cough suppressant because I want to get the mucous out.

Water: Drink clear fuids---such as water, apple juice, pear juice or white grape juice. These fluids will thin mucus. Milk, orange juice etc will thicken mucus. Showers will help to thin mucus also--2 or 3 a day till better. Saline nasal spray or saline sinus lavage will also help. Feel better. ...Read more

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I have a cold where one of my nostrils the right one is all stuffed up. I've taken a cough suppressant that hasn't helped. Please help me?

Try otc: pseudoephedrine or nasal spray such as Afrin or Neosynephrine, for short term relief of nasal congestion. If they don't work, you will need to see a doctor. ...Read more

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Can I give our 3 1/2 year old little remedies cold medicine with cough suppressant in it. Tried honey and natural stuff. Nothing is helping?

Can I give our 3 1/2 year old little remedies cold medicine with cough suppressant in it. Tried honey and natural stuff. Nothing is helping?

NEED SOME PATIENCE:: If honey and natural stuffs not helping, then check with his pediatrician. Some cough is good because it is a natural defense mechanism to clear the upper airway, sinuses and lower respiratory tract. If cough is prolonged, interferes eating, sleeping, then further evaluation needed to rule out asthma, allergy, sinus issue. Otc cough meds has a lot of side effects, not good for kids. ...Read more

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Will taking a decongestant cough suppressant interfere with taking metformin?

Will taking a decongestant cough suppressant interfere with taking metformin?

In general, no.: Short term use of a decongestant should not have any significant effect on metformin, which is meant to be taken as a long-term medication to assist with carbohydrate metabolism. ...Read more

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Dx early dbl pneumonia 5 days ago, now done with antibiotics. Is it okay to take a cough suppressant at night only?

Dx early dbl pneumonia 5 days ago, now done with antibiotics. Is it okay to take a cough suppressant at night only?

Usually yes: If a person has no problem taking cough suppressants (such as Robitussin (guaifenesin) or other over-the-counter cough medicines) when she has no pneumonia, then she can use the same cough suppressants when she has a pneumonia. The otc meds are not strong. Her doctor can advise on the use of stronger or prescription cough suppressants. ...Read more

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What is a safe decongestant/cough suppressant to take with lisinopril?

What is a safe decongestant/cough suppressant to take with lisinopril?

Many: The best thing to do is ask your pharmacist when purchasing one, but most OTC cough meds are fine to take with the ACE inhibitor class. Interestingly, a dry cough is one of the most common side effects of the ACE medications (something to discuss with your Dr.). ...Read more

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My father had bypass surgery last week, and has a cough that keeps him awake at night. Is it ok for him to take a cough suppressant at night?

My father had bypass surgery last week, and has a cough that keeps him awake at night. Is it ok for him to take a cough suppressant at night?

No.: Need a chest xray or a cat scan chest and echocardiogram done to rule out effusions that could be triggering the cough. Of course the person can not be smoking. Need to find a correctable cause for the cough, if the catscan/cxr do not show anything treatable like, effusion, consolidate, infiltrate, atelectasis, pulmonary edema, then cough rx can be considered by surgeon. ...Read more

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My 3yr old has has a persistent cough and phlegm for almost 4 wks now. I've been giving him OTC cough suppressant, but cough and phlegm are not gettin?

My 3yr old has has a persistent cough and phlegm for almost 4 wks now. I've been giving him OTC cough suppressant, but cough and phlegm are not gettin?

Superinfection: Ocassionally, illnesses that start out as viral actually require treatment for secondary infections (bacteria, ear infections, sinusitis, pneumonia, bronchitis, etc.). Most viral infections in children resolve within a week. Asthma should be another consideration. ...Read more

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I am experiencing persistent dry cough since the past two weeks. I have tried war water gargling and take Nyquil Cough suppressant, but the symptom is not improving. Should I see doctor now?

I am experiencing persistent dry cough since the past two weeks. I have tried war water gargling and take Nyquil Cough suppressant, but the symptom is not improving. Should I see doctor now?

You're getting close: Dry coughs are a little less worrisome than productive coughs (when you cough up plegm/sputum...or even blood!) Dry coughs are associated with viral illness, sinus issues, smoking, allergies, asthma, lung irritants, medications, reflux. Really emphasize hydration: water, hot drinks, steamy showers, humidifiers. Use lozenges. Most experts say adults can watch a dry cough for 4-8 weeks before eval. ...Read more

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Which type of nasal decongestant/ cough suppressant can I take while breastfeeding?

Which type of nasal decongestant/ cough suppressant can I take while breastfeeding?

Suggestions: Sudafed and afrin are safe decongestants, Benadryl (diphenhydramine) and nasal steroids ok for allergy symptoms. Honey is a good cough suppressant. Oral steroids for severe allergy symptoms or oral narcotics for severe cough are ok. Best to clear any meds with OB or pediatrician. ...Read more

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Can I take Tessalon Perles (benzonatate) and theraflu nighttime severe cold/cough? They have different active ingredients but both have cough suppressant.

Both work well for c: Both drugs work differently but can be used together.
Tessalon can cause hallucinations so be careful with dosage.
Lots of fluids and bed rest will do more for your symptoms
Hope you are not a smoker. ...Read more

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I'm experiencing a bad dry cough; and few timesi have wet cough with mucus. I am taking a cough suppressant. Can I take also Mucinex (guaifenesin) for mucus?

Certainly: You can take Mucinex (guaifenesin) along with a cough suppressant. Just make sure it does not have an expectorant in the ingredients already. Also drink plenty of liquids - warm or hot preferably to help thin out the thick mucus clogging up your airways. ...Read more

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I am coughing hard non stop like I'm allergic to something. I have CHF but have never had a problem. I recently had bronchitis. Any ideas what is causing my cough. Suppressant do no good. I take an allergy pill and guafinesin and it does little to help. I

I am coughing hard non stop like I'm allergic to something. I have CHF but have never had a problem. I recently had bronchitis. Any ideas what is causing my cough. Suppressant do no good. I take an allergy pill and guafinesin and it does little to help. I

See your doctor: Coughing can be a very common symptom of worsening CHF. Certainly it could also be related to your recent bronchitis. I am certain you recognize that a diagnosis cannot be made without a physical exam. In other words not over the internet. Go see your doctor and he/she will treat you to resolve your symptom regardless of the cause. ...Read more

Dr. Milton Alvis, jr
90 Doctors shared insights

Cough Suppressant (Definition)

Cough suppressants are a kind of antihistamine type drug and common cold or symptom drug (common ...Read more


Antitussive (Definition)

This is a medicine that is supposed ...Read more