Skip to content


    Exciting News for WebMD Members!

    We've been busy behind the scenes building new message boards for you. You'll have new and easier ways to find messages, connect with others, and share your stories.

    And, this will all be available on your smartphone or other mobile device!

    What Do You Need to Do?

    The message board you're used to will be closing in the coming weeks. While many of your boards will be making the move to our new home, your posts will not. Want to keep a discussion going? Save posts you want to continue (this includes your member profile story), so that you can re-post them in the new message boards.

    Keep an eye here and on your email inbox, we'll be back in touch soon to give you all the information you need!

    Yours in health,
    WebMD Message Boards Management

    5 year-old with daily cough for over 1 month
    LotaHossain posted:
    My 5 year-old son has had a cough occurring daily (and especially nightly) for going on over a month now.

    I have been very concerned about this and took him to see his pediatrician 3 weeks ago. She ran some tests and felt it was allergies with post-nasal drip causing the cough and gave us a 3 weeks worth sample of Singulair. She said to try him on it and come back in 3 weeks for a follow-up. She said if the sample works, she'll prescribe him allergy medication and if it doesn't then we'll run some allergen tests.

    I scheduled a follow-up but was told by the front office that my son's pediatrician wouldn't be back from vacation until after December 20. I got an appointment for the 21st.

    The sample is now finished, not that it matters, as it did nothing to alleviate his cough; at least it didn't cause any side effects, either. I have found that 1 - 2 TBSP of honey nightly helps alleviate his coughing to the point that he can sleep throughout at least half of the night, although nothing makes it go away.

    I have tried cough medications, over-the-counter children's Sudafed PE (which helps a little but not as much as the honey), warm teas, herbal remedies, VICK's vapor rub, honey, a vaporizer, saline nasal spray- you name it- nothing provides lasting relief for my son's ailment.

    Before I started treating my son with honey, I used cough syrups but they had little to no effect and he's awake in the middle of the night in coughing fit so severe that he'd vomit.

    So, now my poor son is stuck with this cough which gets worse during the night and is also worse during the day now that a cold-front has moved into our area, and I am at my wits-end because I can't help make his cough go away. I have seriously considered taking my son to the ER, but have opted against it repeatedly because the insurance company likely won't cover it. "It's bothersome but not an emergency."

    The best I can do is a nightly dose of honey combined with vick's vapor rub to lessen the severity of the cough- but again- it doesn't make it go away. I am not content with "toughing it out" and waiting until my son's pediatrician gets back from vacation.

    I don't know what is the real culprit behind his cough, I don't know how to help him, and I don't know where to turn to for help. PLEASE, somebody help me help my son. It pains me to see hi suffering like this.
    crunk05177 responded:
    My son has this EVERY winter. I am not a doc so I am not one to say it's the same exact thing but he does get his yearly winter cough. Elevating his head with pillows at night is a huge help as well as a humidifier. My pedi explained that the heat in the house actually dries out the air so you need to add more humidity to it.

    Good luck and I hope he feels better soon!
    Me (28), DH (30), DS1 - Michael (4) and DS2 - Nathan (1 - severe peanut allergy and an egg allergy)
    Maria_CK responded:
    Is the cough productive at all? I'd take him to the doctor. Is there another doctor in the practice? We went through a similar situation with my son and he had walking pneumonia. No fever. Just coughing and a runny nose.
    FarmWife1979 responded:
    There are a lot of different allergy medicines, not just Singulair. You might try a different one (children's Claritin or Zyrtec that are over the counter medicines) and see if it works better. For DD, Claritin does nothing, but Zyrtec works. For me, Allegra does nothing, but Claritin works. Sudafed PE does nothing, but real Sudafed (the kind usually found behind the counter and in some states only by prescription) works like a dream! Weird, but true. So try a different one, give it at least a week, and see if helps before you try the next one while you wait to get back into your pedi's office.

    I wouldn't go to the ER either ( a waste of time for both of you and a lot of money for you for just a cough), but perhaps another pediatrician or even an urgent care office might be able to help while your doctor is away.

    I agree you might try a cool mist humidifier in his room, at least it won't hurt anything as long as you clean it properly. Did the problems start after you turned the heat on for the winter? I agree the dry air can make a cough worse, but so can the dust (and possibly mold) that can come out when you first turn on the heater for the winter. Check the air filter on your furnace and replace it if you haven't already.

    Sorry this is happening to your son, I just went through DD having a cough for about a month, took her to the pedi, but she said as long as she didn't run a fever and was still breathing ok she should be fine, just have to wait it out.
    LotaHossain replied to FarmWife1979's response:
    No, we didn't turn on the heat. We live in Florida so it's already humid all year long as it is. The typical "chilly weather" in my portion of Florida is in the 70's and in the 60's during the night. It is very rare for the temperature to drop into the 50's but it does occasionally some years, but has not this year. The lowest the temperature had been was 63^F. We do not have a furnace or heater, just air conditioning and since the cool weather had settled in, we quit using the AC (just recently and he's had this cough in warm weather and cool weather with or without air conditioning, alike) and just opened up the windows to let the breeze through and freshen the air inside. If we had not opened the windows the average temperature inside the apartment would be in the mid- 80's. Average annual temperatures in my area are in the mid to upper 80's. No, his cough is not really productive. Occasionally, it is, but it typically takes him having a coughing fit to the point that he vomits, and then he'll have a bunch of mucus in his vomit.
    LotaHossain replied to LotaHossain's response:
    I'd like to add that we have tried all of those allergy medicines and none work, except for the sudafed which helps a little but not significantly. I suspect he has the same type of allergies as I and if so no allergy medication will help, they will just make it worse due to added side effects.
    rafal responded:
    I just find you post witch describe pretty much the problem we have with our son . every thin started when he was 10 months old. Now he is almost 5 years old and we still searching for right treatment. He is very active happy boy . biggest kid in his class . you cant say there is something wrong with him.
    I was wondering if you have any luck with curing your son.

    An_248895 replied to rafal's response:
    We haven't really "cured"him. He did get those allergy tests when his pediatrician came back from her "holiday". He has been diagnosed with asthma and he has severe allergies to ALL forms of dust, moderate-high mold allergies, moderate-high cigarette smoke allergies, mild grass allergies and mild allergies to shrimp and peanuts... so basically, Florida's weather is toxic to him.... It took him being hospitalized 3 times over a 5 month period for this to be diagnosed. He was prescribed a nebulizer with Albuterol sulfate breathing treatments for his episodes and also a preventative medicine which I have recently stopped giving him because the side effects outweigh the benefits. So he just gets breathing treatments when his asthma flairs up.

    I have also since switched medical insurance companies and PCP's because I was really unhappy with the last one, so I will see what this new one has to say about my theory where the old pediatrician wouldn't listen to me.

    The WHOLE SUMMER break of 2012, my son did not have one single flair up, did not need to take his breathing treatment one single time since getting out of school. The FIRST WEEK he went back to school, he had an asthma attack. I believe something at his school is making him sick. Maybe they have dust or mold issues somewhere on campus because even on weekends he does better and during the school week he needs his breathing treatments almost weekly.

    When we see this new PCP and hopefully find out what is going on, I will post more.
    wfkhu1 responded:
    im so sorry love. have you tried getting a second opinion on this. you cant wait for the insurance ,, your poor boy must be suffering or even worse his condition may be worsening internally and we do not even know. i advise that you get him checked out by ateam of specialists. recurrent and continous coughs in children may be deadly. my little girl is also sick, the doctor gave her anti-biotics after diagnosing her with pneumonia. i am stii waiting to see when it will work.
    lanalain responded:
    I just came online today for the same reason. My % yr. old has had a cough since like end of Oct./November. I went through antibiotics, then over the counter meds., and then more cough meds., and then homeopathic cough medicine(which does as well as the other stuff),vicks vapor rub. She has no fever and she does have nasal congestion. I don't know--at this point I am not using OTC cough medicine, it is jus too much in her system. I have found that the Vapor Rub at night works to let her sleep through out the rest of the night--I get up when she starts coughing and apply it,only once in the night. A netty pot for rinsing out her sinuses/nose is also helping to subside these symptoms. I will try the honey tonight. Her cough is active when she is running/playing, in the morning and when sleeping.

    Spotlight: Member Stories

    My name is Carrie. I have wonderful 4 year old son and an amazing husband. We were married on June 15, 2013 and he is a wonderful stepfather to my son...More

    Helpful Tips

    my son is soon to be 5 and me and my husband thinks he has undecended testicles.
    when my son was about 1 our doctor thought my son had undescended testicles and sent us to a specialist. The specialist said he was find ... More
    Was this Helpful?
    12 of 24 found this helpful

    Report Problems With Your Medications to the FDA

    FDAYou are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.