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Cough is a symptom, not a diagnosis. Just like a headache is what you feel, not the cause of a sore head. Coughing is a reaction to irritation, inflammation or narrowing in the airway, and the cause should be found to treat the cause while assisting with the symptom. Cough syrups on the whole, and particularly in paediatrics are useful in suppressing, alleviating and assisting the cough, BUT there is a common misconception that they treat the cough!

What sort, when and for how long?

Day/night; with exercise; previous events; position (worse when lying down)

Common causes – viral URTI / LRTI; asthma, postnasal drip, pneumonia or GORD.

Treatment options:

  • Bronchodilators (best delivered to lungs through a nebuliser or pump)
  • Mucolytics (oral meds help loosen the snot)
  • Suppressors (codeine or codeine-like meds)

Cough syrups usually a mix and match of all.

Cough Condition