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Any Solutions for Coughing at Night?!?!?!

My daughter has been coughing at night the last few nights. I am guessing it is allergy related because she is fine during the day but at night, she has a very persistent cough. She is taking Claritin during the day and I gave her some Delsym last night but nothing seems to work. Any advise for this TIRED mom is greatly appreciated.

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Thanks for all the suggestions!! I have tried the vicks on the feet the last two nights, she has a humidifier and I had her head propped up. I tried Benadryl (per the nurse's recomendation) last night which didn't work. I have another call into the nurse today and from the recommedations, I think I will ask about Singular or Zrytec. I don't think it is asthma because it seems very related to the change of weather.

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I have a 4 yr old boy who is like that too. He has seasonal allegeries so he coughs a lot due to weather changes. So I am suggesting what i do for him. humidifer and rub vicks on chest and back and on the bottom of feet it helps out a lot for him.

If its allergies, local honey works. Someone told me about it and two days later my nose quit running. It worked on my parents as well. Also, a friend is finally sleeping through the night that hadn't been before.
The honey has to be local! A teaspoon in morning and night.

Put Vicks Vapor rub on her feet before she goes to bed and get her to sleep with socks on. That should do the trick!

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Hello K.,

a couple of things to try. if your daughter has asthma, increase her magnesium intake --helps with lung inflamation--
now for the cough

4 drops peppermint oil
2 drops rosemary oil
2 drops basil oil

put that on a tissue or paper towel and put it in her room.
this worked when cough medicine w/ codeine didn't work.
Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter does the same thing. Our pediatrician put her on arbuterol (sp?) breathing treatments and they work wonders! She doesn't have asthma per se but this really helps her sleep at night when she starts having one of her allergy related coughing fits. I tried everything else and this works for us. Take care.

It might be a little late, but I just took my son to the dr. yesterday on this same issue. She said it was all allergy related. He was coughing so much at night and mornings that he would gag. She said his lungs are clear though. She ended up giving me Singular, claritin, and nasalnex nose spray. My oldest son has the same problem. but no coughing. Anyway, just to let you know, the dr. said that when the coughing is related to allergies, the cough syrup that we are giving him, isn't helping at all. it really just knocks them out so they can get some sleep. She also said that the cool mist humidifier works better for the allergy sufferers.
Anyway, good luck with your little one....mine is four too!!

Hi K.
I have 3 kids. My first two are on Advair. They both went through the same thing. Especially during the winter months! Allergies is what the doctor said.They would cough until the threw up it was bad!!
I finally went to my family doctor on it and she recommended Advair twice a day. Once in the morning and once at night before bed for two weeks. After the two weeks only as needed. Believe me it has worked wonders. My son outgrew it already but as soon as I hear my daughter start wheezing I get her back on the treatment. Every situation is different but it's worth looking into!

Hello. You may think about changing your laundery soap to a natural non-scented variety. I'd be happy to talk to you about it. Just send me a message on mama source and I'll get more info to you.
Good Luck!

humidifier helps sometimes. turn off the fan if she has one, or make sure it isn't blowing directly on her. You can also try elevating the head of her bed slightly.

Asthma can be irritated by allergies (I only have attacks in the winter and fall- and more at night than other times).

When the weather gets cooler my son has the same issue. We put vicks on his feet with footed pjs and instead of milk before bed, which seems to intensify the cough, we give him warm diluted apple juice with a teaspoon of honey. It has been a life saver. best of luck.

Get some of those vicks vapors that plug into the wall. That will help a lot during the evening, and also prop her pillow's up, I know if she's use to sleeping flat it won't be as comfortable but it'll help with the drainage, and may help her sleep better.

Put Vicks Vapor rub on her feet before she goes to bed and get her to sleep with socks on. That should do the trick!

I found using a saline nose spray helped dry up my son's sinus passages which helped to eliminate his cough. Also, just turning on your furnace, if you have, could cause some of that. Dry air.

vicks on the feet really does work! Also the night time triaminic is great, it quiets the cough and helps them sleep. (Its the purple one) Good Luck

Have you tried a vaporizer? I keep one right under the bed and ready to go so that at the drop of a hat I can get up in the middle of the night and plug it in when any of mine start that cough. It works really good. Or even try some Vicks vapor rub, sometimes that will help too.

I just wanted to add that you may need to get her checked out for Pertussis (whooping cough.) We got a note home from school yesterday that a student had been diagnosed with it, and that the Denton County Health Dept. has been responding to increasing cases of this, including among children who have had all the recommended immunizations. After learning this, I've become increasingly aware of kids with coughing fits, which it says are often worse at night and may be unrelieved by cough medicines. So I'd recommend getting your child checked for this, esp. with the apparent spread of Pertussis going on right now.

My daughter was going through the exact same thing. We were getting no sleep and the warm honey water, cough syrup, sleeping sitting up (she was already taking all of the allergy medicines) didn't do anything. I finally ended up taking her to Acute Kids Care in Mckinney on the week-end and the doctor there told me there was a virus going around that settled in your lungs and was causing bronchitis. After listening to her chest he put her on Zithromax for 5 days and now her cough is gone. Wow, I am impressed with a lot of your feedback - I'm definitely going to try the vapor rub on the feet the next time my kids get a cold!

Hi K.,

I have the same advice as another Mom...it's an old school fix and works!

Rub some vicks vapor rub on the bottom of your little ones feet and cover with socks.

I use this when ever my 4 year son starts coughing real bad. It works great!

Best Wishes,

C. Roeschen
The Trinity Group
Keller Williams

You have already gotten some really good advice. My daughter used to do the same thing until I took her to the doctor where we discovered she had asthma. Now she takes a breathing treatment before bed and that usually does the trick. She doe not need it everynight but if she does need it she has it. Also we keep our house a little cooler than most. The heat tends to bring on the coughing more. I hope this helps and good luck. I know it can wear both you and your child out.

When my son is coughing to the point of vomiting I ask my pediatrician for prescription Viravan PDM. My son also has allergy-related nighttime coughing. I believe it has a cough suppressant, expectorant and decongestant in it. If he is not coughing to the point of vomiting I use mucinex cough at night and mucinex cold during the day until he is no longer symptomatic. Warm mist vaporizer with liquid Vicks in the water and Vicks on the chest helps him at night also. Be very careful with the allergy/asthma drugs (singulair, Flovent, etc...). We tried Singulair and it had nasty side effects on my son and many reviews I found had similar complaints. Not to say that your daughter will for sure react as my son does, but beware of behavioral changes that may be a side effect of these meds. These are not listed because drugs are not typically tested on children due to ethical issues so the side effects on them are not always known. best of luck!

Hi there K.- You know there is an old wives tale that if you coat the feet at night with vicks vapo rub, and cover it with a sock then the coughing will cease at night. And believe me, this works I have done it for myself and my 3 year old daughter and it really does help. try it, you will be amazed....

I give my daughter benadryl for her nighttime coughing. She has very mild allergies but the benadryl seems to help her sleep better & she doesn't cough as much. My son has asthma so his nighttime coughing is treated with albuterol, pulmicort and his daily allergy meds.

A humidifier helps a lot. Cool mist humidifier is what is recommended to children. Also having the child gargle several times with warm salt water and using saline nose drops will help break down the mucous. These steps along with the medicine will help soothe the cough.

Hi K.-

Vicks makes this machine you plug into the room and refill medicated pads that you put in the machine. They last up to 8 hours. The machine warms the pad causing it to emit the vicks vapor into the room all night. It completely stopped my cough and anytime our son (1yr.old) has a cough we put this in his room. Works Great!!! I think you can buy at walgreens or target.

i rcvd this email the other day...


During a lecture on Essential Oils, they told us how the
foot soles can absorb oils. Their example: Put garlic on
your feet and within 20 minutes you can 'taste' it.

Some of us have used Vicks Vapo rub for years for
everything from chapped lips to sore toes and many body
parts in between. But I've never heard of this. And don't
laugh, it works 100% of the time, although the scientists
who discovered it aren't sure why. To stop night time
coughing in a child (or adult as we found out personally),
put Vicks Vapo rub generously on the bottom of the feet at
bedtime, then cover with socks. Even persistent, heavy,
deep coughing will stop in about 5 minutes and stay
stopped for many, many hours of relief. Works 100% of the
time and is more effective in children than even very
strong prescripti oncough medicines. In addition it is
extremely soothing and comforting and they will sleep

Just happened to tune in A.M. Radio and picked up this guy
talking about why cough medicines in kids often do more
harm than good, due to the chemical makeup of these strong
drugs so, I listened. It was a surprise finding and found
to be more effective than prescribed medicines for
children at bedtime, in addition to have a soothing and
calming effect on sick children who then went on to sleep

My wife tried it on herself when she had a very deep
constant and persistent cough a few weeks ago and it
worked 100%! She said that it felt like a warm blanket
had enveloped her, coughing stopped in a few minutes and
believe me, this was a deep, (incredibly annoying!) every
few seconds uncontrollable cough, and she slept
cough-free for hours every night that she used it.

If you have grandchildren, pass this on. If you end up
sick, try it yourself and you will be absolutely amazed
at how it works.


Hi K., I have recenlty found out that sometimes just the cleaning agents you use in your home can trigger allergies or congestion. I purchase all my household products from a company called Melaleuca, a health and wellness company. They also have a product called sol u mel that can be used in your vaporizer to help calm and get rid of congestion. I am partnered with Melaleuca if you are interested in learning more. I hope this information is helpful, I was truly amazed at all the differences in family when I switched.

I find that meusinex (spelling) helps a lot for me and my kids...

A. J

yes, give her a probiotic everyday..."Natures Way" is a good brand, if your local health food store doesnt have it, then ask what similar brand would suffice. my stepdaughter used to cough so badly at night that she would gag all over her pillow. when i put her on probiotics, it stopped forever. it comes in powder form that you can measure out or capsules that you can empty into juice, water, food, whatever. google probiotics to learn everything about it.

Vicks on the feet with socks (we use Baby Vicks) and a cool mist humidifier. We all do this in my family and it works great!

Good luck and I hope you get some sleep!

I have a 4 yr old boy who is like that too. He has seasonal allegeries so he coughs a lot due to weather changes. So I am suggesting what i do for him. humidifer and rub vicks on chest and back and on the bottom of feet it helps out a lot for him.

If its allergies, local honey works. Someone told me about it and two days later my nose quit running. It worked on my parents as well. Also, a friend is finally sleeping through the night that hadn't been before.
The honey has to be local! A teaspoon in morning and night.

I you prop up the head of her bed, she will drain better and coffing should ease. My grandsughter stayed with us and she coughed the first night. I told my son and he said they have her bed propped up on the head end. We did this and she coughed no more while with us. She has allergies.

I'm right there with you! I'm not sure if your daughter is exactly like my son but this is what we do. My son has a tendency to get a croupy cough at night this time of year. I've found that it is usually onset by a cold front coming in the area. He barks like a seal and has a hard time breathing. Our son is 6 yrs old and he started doing this about 3yr old. So...this year like you...being tired of staying up all night making sure he's breathing (which his episodes can last about a week before they go away...until the next one comes)--I decided that maybe it was allergy related and a type of asthma (since my mother-in-law has pretty severe asthma onset by allergies). The pedi said he didn't think it was asthma since he wasn't having a problem with breathing out..just trouble breathing in (don't know about that?). He gave us a rx for Singular (which is a allergy realted asthma medicine) and we've tried that for 3 wks now. It hasn't helped him from getting it but I think it has helped the severity. I also make a "tent" above his bed and put a warm mist humidifer under the tent--this seems to help the most (i can trust him not to touch the humidifier-but a 4yr old you might have to go cold mist). Also, before the cold front comes in I start giving him Triple Complex BronchoSoothe, BioVent Drops, and if he does develop the cough I give him CroupEX Sprinkles. These products are from http://www.nativeremedies.com and are natural. The have a wide variety of products for different problems and we use a lot of them. He still gets a cough but it is not at all what it use to be and he hasn't stayed up coughing for a month now. If she's not croupy or having trouble breathing, I use the dimatapp cold and cough or robitussin has a good cough syrup. Another thought...the humidifier helps also if you have started running the heater and the air gets too dry which makes them cough as well.

My daughter used to cough like that at night and seemed to get bronchitis a little too frequently. At 4, she was diagnosed with asthma, put on breathing treatments (which she HATED!!!), Singulair and Zyrtec. A year and a half later, I find the asthma diagnosis to be a bit extreme. She only has problems during allergy season. We give her the Singulair and Zyrtec in the evenings only when allergy season rears it's ugly head (half the year in Texas!:))The rest of the year she is fine with no meds and we have had no need for the breathing treatments since we figured out it really was allergy related. We spent MANY a sleepless night with the persistent cough until we settled on this regimen.

If none of the other remedies work then you need to go to the doctor. The deap seal barking cough at night is a tell tale sign of bronchitis. When mine starts that and nothing else works we start back on breathing treatments. Then go on into the doctor if those don't work. If it is bronchitis nothing will work except for steroids, antibiotics if infected and probably some form of inhaled medication. Anti-histamines are good. You might try zyrtec if you get no help from the claritin.
Good luck,

I know 7 kids that have caught the croup this season. I had never heard of kids really getting it anymore, but apparently the virus has been pretty active in this area. Possibly it may be that??? Not sure.

My son had the same problem when he was little. When he was about 5 we found out the hard way that he had asthma. We had had the same problems all along. Nothing worked and the coughing was mostly at night.
It's really hard for the doctor to diagnose unless they catch them in the middle of an attack, but my doctors office at one point had me calling in to the 24 on call nurse and holding the phone up to my son's mouth at night so that she could try to hear.

Hi K. - you have so many responses. But we have been using Pediox allergy medicine and Vics as well. Both help our daughter.

I'd try the childrens Zyrtec which is now over the counter. Both my children have allergies and my son has the chronic cough through the night. Our pharmacist told me to switch and make him take it at night then it helps him through the night and he doesn't wake up coughing as well. It worked for me! Hope this helps you some.

I didn't read through all of the responses so I apologize if this is a repeat. Rub Vicks on her feet and cover her feet with socks. It works!! I do it with my 4 year old and my 1 year old. Give it a try!

Hi K.,

Something our Doctor told us that would help when it gets like this is a tablespoon of honey just before going to bed-it really worked for my 4 yr. old daughter this past spring. I don't know about the Vicks but I do recommend the honey. HTH

My son had the same problem last year. Ours was a chronic cough that we could not get rid of. He would cough so hard that he would throw up whatever he ate or phlem. It turned out that ours was allergy & asthma related. We always have a problem when the weather turns cold. I tried every kind of cough medicine, vaporizer you name it we tried it.

Our chronic cough was allergy / asthma related. Our Pedi had him on Pulmicort (nebulizer) & Singulair. But we could never get rid of the cough.

Long story short.... Allergist put him on Advair in addition to the Singulair & he also takes Zyrtec (Claritin didnt work for us). Within a few days we were able to get rid of his cough. Last winter was the first year that we didn't have the cough all season.

I hate that he has to take so much medicine but it really helped. My son is 5 and every year (fall / winter) we ended up in the emergency room or hospital with his breathing problem. Once we started the meds we had not had any visits to either one.

I would have never thought that a cough would be related to asthma, but ours was.

Hope this helps! Good luck.

A couple things that have worked for us are a humidifier in the room at night, a warm bath before bed and a nasal spray such as saline spray because it will drip down the throat and lubricate it a bit and help with congestion. Also make sure her head is propped up in her bed/crib. Good luck!

I heard that rubbing Vick's Vapor Rub on the bottoms of their feet works. I do it with my kids and it really does help. They say the bottom of your feet are recepticles to the rest of your body, like reflexology. Anyway, I rub vick's on their feet and chest, cover with socks and t-shirts and they sleep fine. I think it's better than filling their bodies full of prescriptions.

Use a cool mist humidifier.

Please call me. My son has severe allergies and we have discovered a product that works wonders! It is all natural and it is awesome!!!!

S. Chavira

Buckwheat honey or regular local honey 1 tsp at bedtime. Honey is a natural antibiotic and cough suppressant. I have used it for years and my niece now gives it to her 5 and 6 year old instead of cough and cold medicines. Kroger sells Buckwheat honey. Good luck L.

Try a humidifier in her room and make sure she is propped up a night with either a pillow or even something under the legs at the head of the bed.

Hi K.. I had to respond because we have going through this about 10 days and it got really bad over the weekend. Nothing seemed to help the cough. Is your daughter having what I call coughing fits. Meaning constant coughing causing choking or making her throw up phlemn? My son was doing this over the weekend and I took him to the pedi yesterday. He said he probably has asthma that is seasonal. Now I'm a nurse and when I was school you always associated asthma with wheezing. Well times have changed some. He said lots of coughing at night and after exercise (running playing) can be asthma. He said allergies or a cold can set it off. Now, I'm not trying to scare you but you might want to take him in. You said she's only been coughing a few nights so it could very well be just a cold. But I was very surprised at what the doctor told me. My little boy had no wheezing, just a cough, although it wasn't a normal cold like cough, it was constant and he even had it during the day, just worse at night. We started him on singular last night, and maybe it's in my mind, but he slept all night, waking just once for a few min. of coughing. He's also on pulmicort breathing treatments. Hope this helps and Good Luck and God Bless you.

Another thing to look at (it looks like you've already considered alot) is lowering your heater 2-4 degrees from what you have is set at for sleeping hours. It sounds like the problem coincided with the weather cooling off, so the heater maybe aggravating the condition. I know this is a problem for my mother...she keeps her house COLD in the winter because of it. :-)

try the triminic fan it is great.It is a little battery powered fan that you put an insert into and it will fill her room with vapors for eight hrs and then turns off automatically.I love it.It is a little pricey but works so great.

You might take her to the doctors, my son has the same problem and it is asthma related. He will cough all night long, I had to start breathing treatments for him recently (he hasn't needed them in awhile).

May need to put a humidifier next to her. The air is really dry now and sounds like she could use the moisture. Plus, it is good for your skin too.

Persistant coughing, even only at night, can be a sign of asthma. Could be a sinus infection but in any case, get thee to a doctor!

I haven't read all of your responses but thought I would add a comment. My girls suffer from seasonal allergies and last spring they were doing the same thing. I finally took them to the Dr. after trying everything including propping, humidifier, vicks on the feet, Delsym, etc. Both of them had developed bronchitis. It wasn't real bad yet but they both required breathing treatments. If the coughing continues, you may want take her to the dr. to rule out bronchitis.

I'm not sure yet what to do either as I have had the same trouble. If you find some relevant advice I would love to know about it, too.

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