Does your child cough a lot? Here are some possible causes:

Allergies are one of the most common causes of cough. Your child may be allergic to certain things like dust, pollen, pets, plants, which may cause a runny nose and sniffles. If the allergy is not very strong, the mucous may simply drip down the back of his throat instead running down his nose or making him sneeze. This constant dripping of mucous into the throat irritates the passage, causing your child to cough. The best way to cure this kind of cough is to ensure your child avoids contact with any allergens. The house should be kept dust free. Often dust is removed just from surface or visible areas, while it lurks in invisible areas such as under the bed or behind furniture. Make sure that these hidden areas are also well cleaned and dusted. Carpets in India should be cleaned everyday, as dust tends to settle on them. And every once in a while, the carpets should be taken out of the house and given a proper dusting or beating so that it is thoroughly cleaned. If you have a vacuum cleaner, use it to clean the carpets on a daily basis, so dust gets sucked out. Similarly, remove plants from your child's bedroom, and make sure the leaves of plants are kept clean.

If either parent smokes, it is possible that second-hand smoke is responsible for your child's cough. Avoid smoking around your child. Designate a smoking area in your house, which could be either your bedroom or your study. If you have a balcony, let that be the smoking area and make it a point to smoke only in your balcony. Similarly, when you have a party at home, let your friends know that they should go to the balcony and smoke so your home remains smoke-free and your child's lungs stay healthy.

Home remedies

Before calling a doctor, you could try and cure the cough on your own. Here are some ingredients you can find in your kitchen that should help cure the cough.

Honey: It warms you up and is excellent for colds. It also soothes the throat, kills infections and has many other benefits.

Ginger: It is a natural anti-inflammatory, and helps in relieving chest congestion.

Vinegar: It is a natural antiseptic and has many excellent properties. Not only can vinegar be applied to skin to soothe various conditions, and to hair, but it is very healthy when ingested. So, eat more vinegar-based salads on a regular basis.

In addition to the above remedies, have your child gargle every night with warm water, salt, and a pinch of turmeric to kill infection. This will cure his cough and keep his tonsils in great health, thus increasing his overall immunity.

When should you call the doctor?

Call the doctor if your child has been coughing for a period of more than three weeks. He could have developed chronic cough, and medicine needs to be prescribed to treat this condition. Persistent coughing can also be a symptom of asthma. In fact, if your child has mild asthma, coughing may be the only symptom, so it is best not to ignore it.