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Allergic Cough Season

by Sue Hubbard, M.D.

Another Monday in the office and the newest symptom in our patients seem to be coughs. In our area the flu is passed, RSV is gone with the wind, and now the allergic cough season has arrived. It was a cacophony today; every room with short, frequent coughs, and wheezes in between.

Many children in the 18-month – 4 year old crowd, who tend to be allergic and often have a family history of asthma, will cough at this time of year due to the weather changes and pollens. With Texas having warm days, gusty winds and the occasional 40 degree temp change in one day, it is a set up for allergic coughs. That is why this entity is termed reactive airway disease, the bronchial tree gets inflamed and tightens due to the allergens and that frequent, non-productive, tight cough erupts. This cough is often most notable at night, or when your child is actively playing, while continuously coughing. Many parents complain that their children will cough continuously while sleeping and don’t seem rested in the am. They otherwise do not seem sick, no fever, many with just a clear runny nose and the cough from *–*-.

If your child is having symptoms that seem similar to these it is a good time to visit the pediatrician to discuss the possibility of reactive airway disease, or another similar entity described as cough variant asthma. Some of these persistent coughs will respond to bronchodilator and allergy therapy. Not only will your child feel better if the cough improves, but everyone will get a little more sleep!

That’s your daily dose, we’ll chat again tomorrow.

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