Search or explore topics

What Does a Persistent Cough Mean?

Is your cough something to worry about? Everyone picks up a cough from time to time, but when that cough lingers on for more than two weeks, alarm bells may start sounding in your head. Here’s how to know what your persistent cough could be mean.

persistent cough

In This Article:

  • A persistent cough may be a sign of postnasal drip, acid reflux, asthma or an infection like the common cold, the flu, bronchitis or pneumonia.
  • A cough is considered chronic or persistent when it lasts longer than eight weeks in adults or four weeks in children. While smoking is the leading cause of chronic coughing, it could also be caused by heart or lung disease.
  • To treat a persistent cough at home, use a humidifier, drink lots of fluids, take cough drops, consume a teaspoon of honey once or twice per day and avoid caffeine, alcohol and smoking.

Cardiopulmonary Services