What Are the Most Common Causes of a Chronic Cough?


Quick Answer

Typical causes of a chronic cough include asthma, postnasal drip, gastroesophageal reflux disease, and infections such as pneumonia and bronchitis, notes the Mayo Clinic. Inhaling foreign objects can also cause this condition, particularly in children, according to MedicineNet.

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Full Answer

A chronic cough lasts for about eight months or over time. Doctors do not consider the cough to be a disease, but a symptom of an underlying condition. Asthma is a major cause of this condition, characterized by wheezing or breathing problems. A cough from asthma became worse if the patient exposes himself to cold air, or substances such as smoke, perfumes or pollen, says MedicineNet.

Sometimes, the nose may produce extra mucus, causing the mucus to trip down the back of the throat, resulting in a chronic cough. This condition is called postnasal drip. Moreover, acid from the stomach can flow back into the esophagus, irritating the throat and causing chronic coughing, a condition called gastroesophageal reflux disease or acid reflux, notes the Mayo Clinic. During acid reflux, the lungs can inhale foreign substances, which can aggravate this condition or damage the lung tissue, explains MedicineNet.

Some infections such as pneumonia and bronchitis can increase chances for chronic coughing. Fungus, bacteria, or viruses cause these infections. A chronic cough from a viral infection does not respond to medication, according to MedicineNet.

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