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Susan RN
Susan RN, Nurse
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 584
Experience:  RN DNP, nurse educator since 1996,hospital RN 10 yrs,Advd practice, OB/Peds,Pharm, medical
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Chronic cough in toddler, has gone on for 2 months, she is

Customer Question

Chronic cough in toddler, has gone on for 2 months, she is loosing sleep and I am at the end of my rope.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Susan RN replied 7 years ago.

Hello,Customer I will do my best to help you. I do have a few questions for you so I can get a better idea of your child's overall health and wellness.

What medical conditions does your child have?

What medicines does your child take, include vitamins?

Is your child running a fever? If so, what is it?

What other symptoms does your child have - sneezing, runny nose, bringing up sputum with cough, etc.?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
She is 2 years old and began coughing Nov. 20th, she was treated for a sinus infection with an antiobiotic, saw relief for a few days and back to Dr. for coughing all night, treated with cool mist humidifier, baby vicks, fluids, still coughing Dr. gave abueterol to make sure not asthma, still coughing so put her on a 5 day steriod at 10ml a day - started Dec. 24 and ended 28th, still coughing--to the point of very interrupted sleep. She has no medical conditions, she takes a flinstones multivitamin, and 2 D-3 vitamins daily, she had a low grade fever of 100.9 the night before last. She has a runny nose, sometimes clear, sometimes yellow/green, can't tell if she is bringing up sputum. I have tried benadryl off and on... and had hydroxine from a previous issue with hives .... gave her 1/2 tsp. on the severe nights and it did stop the coughing and helped her sleep. Gave her Zyrtec 1/2 tsp at 12:00 pm today.. coughed her entire nap ( 1 1/2 hour....)
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Just looking for a way to provide her relief and much needed sleep.
Expert:  Susan RN replied 7 years ago.
Did you receive the reply I just posted?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
No, I did not receive the reply.
Expert:  Susan RN replied 7 years ago.
Thank you for the additional information, it sounds like her cough may be due to drainage going down the back of her throat when she lays down to sleep. Have you tried raising the head of her bed up with a blanket roll under the head of her mattress?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Yes, I have the crib elevated. Is there anything else that I am missing. The coughing is continual.....especially, when laying down but even when she is up and playing it is occuring. I am especially concerned due to the length of time she has been coughing.
Expert:  Susan RN replied 7 years ago.

It could be that since she is starting to run a fever (low grade) and the drainage has some color to it, she could be starting to get a return of her sinus infection. The hydroxine dries up and secretions and makes her sleepy which is why it is working when she sleeps.That is a good thing.

The other things you are doing are right on target. Something you can try is a cough syrup for kids that contains dextrmethorphan like pedicare longacting cough or some delsym liquid. You may have to ask the pharmacist for these since they may be behind the counter but should not require a prescription. If her nose seems really congested, you can try using saline nasal spray or drops for children, then use a bulb syringe to suction the mucus out of her nose if she is unable to blow it out.


Use acetaminophen for the fever. If her symptoms continue, her fever stays, or her drainage continues to stay colored, I would not hesitate to have the doctor see her again in case her sinus infection is back.


I hope this information is helpful. I am here to help.

Please click the accept button if this information is helpful. If you are very satisfied, a bonus is welcomed. Please let me know if you have any more questions or need anything. As a mother, grandmother, & nurse, I understand what you are going through right now. Try to get some rest for yourself as well so you will have the strength to take care of both you and your child. Thank you. Prayers for you.

Susan RN and 5 other Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I tried the delsym since it is a single ingredient cough syrup and got reprimanded by the doctor.... but it didn't put a dent in it........ since I gave her the zyrtec at 12;00 --- will I be able to give her the hydroxine tonight at bed time..... or can I give the cough medication along with the antihistimine?
Expert:  Susan RN replied 7 years ago.

Just out of curosity, did the doctor say why not to give the delsym? Just wondering.


If the zyrtec is the 12 hour duration, then I would wait until closer to midnight to give her the hydroxine OR the cough medicine with an antihistamine.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

because of the recommendation not to give children under 6 cough medication etc.

Expert:  Susan RN replied 7 years ago.

I understand. Sometimes you don't want to suppress a cough in a young child; however, it is helpful if the child is able to get some rest, especially if the cough is dry and hacking.

Please let me know if you need anything else. God bless you.