When to See a Doctor for a Cough

When to See a Doctor for a Cough

Most of the time a cough is nothing to worry about. Most coughs do not last long, and they are usually caused by things in our environment or irritation to the lungs. These coughs are nothing to worry about and will go away on their own. Some coughs are the result of a mild viral cold, but this too doesn’t usually require any type of treatment.

When to See a Doctor for a Cough

However, there are some situations in which you should see a doctor for a chronic cough. This is a cough that does not go away after 8 to 10 days, and may actually hang on for months at a time. Some chronic coughs are unavoidable, such as long-time smokers cough and allergy symptoms, but for the most part a chronic cough is an indicator that some type of treatment is required.

You should see your doctor soon if you have had a cough lasting more than 10 days without a diagnosis of respiratory illness. You should also see your doctor right away if you begin having uncontrollable coughing that makes it difficult to breathe. Your doctor will make the determination of what tests to run to make sure that you are healthy.

A Note About COVID-19:

A new, persistent cough is one of the hallmark symptoms of COVID-19. During this time while we are still fighting and learning about this virus, it is important to take measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. This means making sure that people exposed to the virus receive adequate testing and treatment. 

If you have developed a cough recently that doesn’t seem to be going away or that gets worse quickly, you should not wait a full 10 days to contact your doctor. Self-isolate yourself and contact your doctor right away to discuss your symptoms. They will let you know if you need to be tested and, if so, where to go to be tested. It is important not to ignore these symptoms at this time.

If you have any questions about whether or not you need to be seen for your cough, contact us today for information or to schedule your appointment.