We at Hyfe, Inc., are a company devoted to working on tools to better understand the importance of cough. It is Hyfe’s intention in the future to seek regulatory approval for medical products that analyze cough in order that they may be used to diagnose, monitor, and facilitate better treatment of respiratory illnesses.
Can pregnancy cause a chronic cough? Should I worry about cough during pregnancy?
Morning sickness, backaches, swollen feet, and unusual cravings are often on the long list of symptoms expected during pregnancy. An unlikely appearance of a chronic cough can shift focus to a possible underlying medical condition, when in fact, it can be pregnancy-related.
Coughing should prompt the investigation for a respiratory illness, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the significant changes to a pregnant body are often a culprit for chronic cough.
Beware of changes in signs and symptoms when you contract a bacterial or viral infection.
During pregnancy, women will observe nasal and sinus congestion. The mucous membranes are known to swell during pregnancy. Increased blood volume is a contributor to this. Additionally, these mucus membranes might also undergo inflammation among a few pregnancies. These changes indirectly result in postnasal drip, a frequent cause of a chronic cough.
Immune system mediation during pregnancy increases sensitivity to both infections and allergens. In addition, pregnancy may decrease immune system defenses. This defense reduction is why doctors often advise pregnant women to maintain additional protection against infections, especially now during the pandemic.
Any infection, even the mild flu, can exaggerate symptoms such as a cough during pregnancy. In addition, exposure to allergens can also have an increased hypersensitivity reaction during pregnancy.
Pregnant women have an increased overall sensitivity to the cough reflex as well. This heightened cough reflex is a protective mechanism against possible episodes of choking.
A significant portion of these changes relates to the steady increase in pregnancy hormones. Since these changes are unfamiliar to the body (particularly true for a first pregnancy), it results in mechanisms to protect, such as a cough.
There is also an increase in stomach acid reflux with pregnancy, especially once the pregnant belly is large enough to displace the stomach from its position.
Prolonged stomach acid reflux can result in a chronic cough. Mums-to-be might also note a metallic taste and nausea that progressively increases with the cough.
You can use medications for asthma in pregnancy if you are an asthma patient.
You may experience bacterial infection, common cold, and respiratory infection.
In short, whenever your cough makes you feel uncomfortable and does not recover within a few days.
A chronic dry cough during pregnancy is most likely related to the underlying changes that are occurring. Often this is no significant reason for concern.
You may be worrying if dry cough during pregnancy affects the baby? Here is a study explaining cough fracture in pregnancy.
However, a few red flag signs can include:
These signs should prompt immediate medical attention.
A cough lasting for more than a week should receive medical attention in most instances. You may want to know the unexpected cause of chronic cough in a pregnant woman.
The pollutants, allergens, or even a sick person in your environment can be an underlying cause for the cough you are experiencing. It is better to know the risk-causing agents as per your body type. Invest in air purifiers, dusting often, and avoid your known allergens.
Tracking the appearance of a cough and the environment you are in at the time can help to navigate through your potential cough aggravators.
Tracking other symptoms such as heartburn, fever, and sputum production can also help understand whether you need immediate medical attention for your cough.
A body at rest recovers. Just sitting down after a long day with your legs propped up on a stool can do wonders. During phases of rest, your body is recovering from the day, also reducing inflammatory reactions that may have taken place.
A healthy meal with vital nutrients can help to provide an immune boost. It also helps with recovery if you have contracted any illness during this time.
Remaining hydrated can limit the dry coughs experienced with pregnancy. Sipping on warm fluids throughout the day can also reduce the irritation that may be present. Staying hydrated is also an immunity booster.
How do I get rid of cough while pregnant?
Chewing some lozenges, adding a humidifier to your room, or a session of steam inhalation can significantly help reduce congestion. You can also use over counter medications.
Moreover, you can resolve acid reflux by taking antacid medicines. This treatment helps you prevent acidity. Hence, it can serve as a solution to cough due to acid reflux.
Are there any home remedies for cough during pregnancy?
Moreover, adding natural immune boosters such as turmeric, ginger, garlic, and even some natural sunlight can help navigate through a looming cough.
What do if I get a cough during pregnancy?
Coughing during pregnancy, while unlikely, is a possibility. It can be a sign of alarm, but it should not raise significant cause for concern in most cases. To understand whether a cough you develop during pregnancy is concerning, consider tracking your cough.
Taking advantage of a specialized app to register variables such as frequency, sputum production, and associated symptoms can help reach a faster conclusive diagnosis.
At all costs, avoid self-medication, especially during pregnancy. All medications, with their recommended doses, are not always safe while pregnant. And above all, a nagging chronic cough always requires medical attention, especially if medicines need to be prescribed. Consulting a healthcare provider is always a better option.