People say this often when they have bronchitis, asthma attack or pneumonia. Secretions in your lung and your windpipe really does make you feel that you're coughing your lungs out.
But, is loud coughing bad?
My opinion and observation of countless patients and family members tells me, it is not a bad thing, quite the contrary. Clearing your lungs with a good and deep cough is a good thing. Moreover, in case you're having a heart attack, a few strong and deep coughs might dislodge the blood clot in your coronary artery, that is blocking your heart muscle from getting oxygen with fresh blood.
My observations throughout the years. I repeat, these are my observations and not scientific facts:
My aunt very rarely coughed, even on those rare occasions when I heard her coughing, it sounded like a kitten's sneeze. Weak and barely audible, it sounded like she just cleared her throat while I heard the secretions rattling in her windpipe. She ended up with a few bronchitis and pneumonia every year, and only taking courses of antibiotics helped her infections. She was 61 when diagnosed with lung cancer, and she never smoked in her life.
I always wondered growing up, why my neighbor was afraid to sneeze. Every time she had to sneeze or cough, she stifled it by holding her nose and just discretely cleared her throat. I asked my mom, she said "her mother always told her that a lady doesn't let her bodily function be known by coughing or sneezing loudly." Well, as I remember, she always complained of sinus headaches, and by the time I was a teenager, she was diagnosed with sinus cavity cancer. It was not pretty.
My dad coughed and sneezed so loudly, that I always thought people heard him in the next block. Every time he coughed, the cat jumped three feet up in the air out his deep sleep. Dad was a chain smoker, started his day with whiskey and surprisingly, when everyone around him had the flu or lung infection, he didn't. I never remember once that he would have any infection of the lungs or sinuses - no cancer either.
I observed patients working as a nurse. People who coughed quietly and was able to clear only the top of their lungs, suffered twice as long with bronchitis or pneumonia as people who had deep and loud cough.
Cough ans sneeze away I say - but always in a disposable tissue or the crock of your elbow if there is no tissue around - it might save you from long suffering from infections or from taking too much antibiotics.
I cough almost as loud as my dad. And, if I feel I have more secretions that my body can handle, I only use expectorants and never cough suppressant.
In this small book I listed a few herbs that can help your cough with various respiratory condition such as:
Elecampane (inula helenium)
Camphorous root, clears stagnant phlegm from the lungs, especially useful in bronchitis or post nasal drip. It promotes expectoration in chronic bronchitis, preventing pneumonia, asthma, emphysema and tuberculosis, also used for treating ear infection. The fresh root said to kill tuberculosis bacteria. This herb is shown to have powerful antibiotic properties. It was used by gypsies to stimulate the immune system of horses, and is also used in spleen, stomach and large intestine ailments. Often used with ginger, and cinnamon.
Avoid during pregnancy. Large dose may cause vomiting, diarrhea, spasms and symptoms of paralysis. Touching the fresh herb might cause contact dermatitis.
The usual recommended dose is 1.5-4 grams in capsule form or as a decoction, three times daily.
Balloonflower (platycodon grandiflorum)
Promotes productive cough, effectively clears the lung and helps to prevent infection in colds. Used in sore throat, pneumonia, pleurisy, bronchitis, tuberculosis and lung abscess due to its action of promoting pus drainage. Also used in diabetes and high cholesterol level.
Balloon flower root should not to be taken for a chronic cough or by those patients who cough up blood. As with all herbs, it is best to consult a licensed practitioner or physician.
Liquid extract: root powder 1:1 25% ethanol. Daily dosage: Powder - 6 g daily; 0.5 g as a single dose, decoction - 1 g daily; 0.2 g as a single dose
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