My toddler has been coughing for 3 months now

Jen - posted on 08/06/2012 ( 68 moms have responded )

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One doctor said it's allergies and give her Claritin. That didn't work. Another said antibiotics and another said Singulair. That didn't work. Then she said an inhaler. We're hesitant but the coughing has been going on too long. Any suggestions? We already tried everything allergy related; locked the pets out of her sleeping room, bought an air purifier, cool mist humidifier, wedge pillow, nose drops, vacuumed the mattress, washed linen in hot water, changed the air filter but to no avail. It's not just the house b/c she coughs upon waking even away from home.

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Heather - posted on 09/04/2012

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Pet dander travels in the air as well as clings to clothing and people...locking them out of your daughter's room won't eliminate the issue.



I've had allergies to pet dander, pollen, dust, and mold since I was little. If the kiddo is allergic to animals, it's time to decide fluffy vs allergies. Sorry to be blunt, but if it's making her miserable, it's time to get serious. If it's the pets, they will continue as long as they are a part of the household, if they share a room or not.



Take her to the doctor to get an allergen test. The only way to know for sure what's going on and what is causing it. They do a couple light scratches on the back, mark it, and check in a week later to see which ones had a reaction. Find out what it is and then it can be solved.



PS. Food allergy signs are usually hives, swelling of the throat, etc... not coughing... ;) If anything, she probably has indoor allergies, which is quite common and easily treatable. I give my son localized honey once a day since I don't want to medicate him. Not every allergy medication works, I've spent 20 years with allergies and only one medication I tried in that time has worked for me. Claritin rarely works so if it doesn't do anything, it's because it's not effective to begin with. Hope this helps.

Janessa - posted on 11/08/2013

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I know you said you tried all the allergy things, but just because I just experienced this, do you know if there is any mold in your house, our little baby was coughing for a little over a month, mostly at night, and we finally discovered it could be mold, and got it all out, and almost immediately she was better. Not saying it is that, I'm just sharing my most recent experience. It could be other things as well. Good-luck. Hope its not asthma.

Leah - posted on 11/05/2013

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There is a condition called cough variant asthma and some kids can get it after and during colds/viruses. Inhalers can shorten the length of how long the cough hangs on for but they do not work for all kids. I also recommend trying to do a diet that might single out if a minor allergy to a food is causing the problem. Good luck, hope this helps.

Erika - posted on 10/06/2012

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Im not sure of this has already been mentioned but my oldest daughter coughed a lot at night. She would throw up due to the cough. Took her to the doctors and they had her on cough meds but it wasnt doing anything. Finally took her to a pulnonologist and they put her on allergy meds plus a nasal spray. After about a month the coughing lessened. Than they switched her allergy med to something a little stronger and put her on an inhaler along with the nasal spray. It worked perfectly!! That was 4 yrs ago and she sleeps peacefully now. Check out an allergy specialist or pulmonologist. My regular pediatrician never mentioned a specialist. Only learned about it when i took her to the ER one night. Good luck!

[deleted account]

as odd as it sounds - try putting some vapor rub such as vicks on your child's feet and covering with socks before bed. I thought our Dr friend was crazy when he said to do this for our son who also coughs at night, but it really does work. I personally don't like putting vapor rub on my kid's chest or my own as I feel it is too strong and burns the skin but putting it on the feet keeps it off sensitive skin and is not as close to the nose, so it doesn't smell as strongly. I use the baby version of vicks - even for myself. Good luck.

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Kate - posted on 12/16/2013

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I am curious to know what happened. I am going through the same thing with my 7 month old daughter.

Stacey - posted on 11/14/2013

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My daughter was like that last fall- winter her doctor finally put her on a nebulizer. She had a few treatments and the cough was gone.

Marisa - posted on 11/10/2013

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Try an inhaled for sure. We did and well from night one it was a miricle. Well we started with nebulizer, but same drug. My sons asthma acts up at night more than day. You will damage his lungs thinking about it. Also use Flovent to prevent. Once the kid can breathe work on food allergies and try taking meds. Good luck. My sons only symptom was night coughing....

Zen - posted on 10/31/2013

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Don't assume you have to give them drugs and deal with this for the rest of their lives! One mom told me she had her kid eat only organic food and after three years of using an inhaler, n just two weeks he never had to use it again! I do not get anything from saying this. I don't own an organic food company. I am just a mom who wants kids to be healthy.

Zen - posted on 10/31/2013

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1 out of 3 kids now have asthma, autism, allergies and auto immune disorders and they have been linked to glyphosate, which is in Roundup and is sprayed on GMO food ( 80% of our food) and on non organic food as a drying agent- wheat, sugar, rice, beans and more. 5 billion lbs are sprayed a year on our food. This is believed to be the reason for our kids skrocketing health issues. Eat organic and kids get better. I have seen it and have read hundreds of testimonials from moms. check out moms across america dot com and the blog or about section for testimonials.

Zen - posted on 10/31/2013

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Look to food. Dairy causes mucus. Also glyphosate which is sprayed on GMO foods ( soy, corn, canola and cotton seed oil- in 80% of our food) and non gmo food lke wheat, sugar, rice and beans as a drying agent, has been linked to COPD and asthma, and can affect breathing and coughing. Eat only organic food for a couple weeks and see if it helps.

Lisa Jayne - posted on 10/31/2013

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i have the same prob has hayfever,asthma,and on singulair tablets as well we dont have beds and she moves arounds alot i try and help her up and she keeps coughing til she vomits

Cheryl - posted on 09/30/2013

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It does sound like Asthma. Note that the Flixotide takes three weeks to work.

Karla - posted on 06/12/2013

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Hello Jen,
Many times when children have a cold it may be due to allergies; keeping the air at home is a crucial part to that. My son is also very prone to indoor air allergens and we have been trying to find a solution for a while. I was just been introduced through a friend about this product called the Bonair that is an air filtering and freshener vent. Right now it is in the process of funding to be able to produce and cater to demand. I recommend you take a look at the campaign video here:

http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/bonair...

Erica - posted on 10/22/2012

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My son started with asthma at an early age if this is every night then it's asthma which can be a serious condition so I would take your child to be tested you can also notice most of the time if u listen to their chest or in their back it will be a slight rumbling and a wheeze if you can hear this then it's straight to the doctors for an asthma treatment plan also if your child coughing after running around listen then also if u hear the wheeze then if not worse then to prevent extra problems seek medical help some children will grow out of it as my other son did but my oldest was unfortunate to be stuck with it for life at a higher rate

Angelina - posted on 10/11/2012

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My son is 2 1/2 had a cough that would literally stop you in your tracks since he was 6 months, they though acid reflux, treated for it, they thought allergies which I dont doubt he has. He def has them . He is on allegra and singulair. He now has a inhaler w/chamber and his cough is gone other then flare ups . He def has asthma and am happy I got the cough taken care of, give it a shot! Waking in the middle of the night is a sign of asthma as well.

Jen - posted on 10/06/2012

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I considered that; her tonsils do look big. My other daughter had her tonsils/adenoids removed when she was 8 and the aftermath was horrible. I wouldn't wish that on anyone, especially my 2 year old!

Kimmy - posted on 10/06/2012

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My daughter did the same thing and still does a little but not near as bad as she used too. Hers is allergies, but was also related to drainage from her ears going to the back of her throat. It took the dr's a couple yeard to figure that out. Since my daughter has had her adnoids removed, her coughing has goten so much better. U might just check on that.

Jen - posted on 10/04/2012

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Update: My daughter stopped coughing just like that. I'm now convinced it was the summer pollen.

Dora - posted on 09/26/2012

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Hi Jen! I am Portuguese. I had the same problem with my daughter, I took her to different doctors and each gave her different medication. She was well for 1 week and she would go back to caugh for 3 week. She didn't have a problem in her lungs. I decided to give her supplements, that I by in natural shops (but it should not replace the healthy food). Also I gave her a syrop made of brown sugar with sliced carrot, I sliced it very thin so she would eat the carrot as well. She needs to strengthen the immune system defences, so she needs a lot of vitamines that she gets from lots of vegetables and fruits, preferably fresh and different sorts. Cod liver oil is also very good but i coudn't find it anywhere! Hope to be helpfull. Sorry if I wrote any mistakes. Good luck!

Sinead - posted on 09/22/2012

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ok, so a few questions first . 1, how old is your child .2, is this cough all day? Is it worse at night? Are there any other symptoms? i ask these questions because my 3 year old was diagnosed with asthma - even though you cant offically diagnose till over 4 but using an inhaler changed his life, I let the coughing go oon and on not even realising until a friend pointed out he had been coughing for about 6 months - the night time was the worst which is often a common tale tale trait of asthma.

believe me i am a bad asthmatic and i didnt even think to check him.

I give him an inhaler before bed now - and he is finally getting some sleep which is helping him to recover - the coughing can be VERY EXHAUSTING - he used to cough till he threw up - which i myself have done with asthma - so i would try the inhaler and if it doesnt work you can rule out asthma! Hope this helps! xx

Patricia - posted on 09/07/2012

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If you are going through anything like I did I would have to say your son has asthma. I went through this with my son since he was one. He was put on everything listed above. Singular seemed to work until it didn't. My hubby and I went four months with no sleep because every time he went to lie down he would cough. By this time he was two years old I would not leave the doctor’s office until I had an answer. My son was taking ten different med’s all at the same time that the doctor said he needed. I stopped it because my son was turning two was a walking zombie. Once he started school we had to pull him out of school every year for at least a week because of the coughing. He is a very active child and has no problems with coughing until he tries to sleep. That’s where I question the Doctor about having asthma he doesn’t show any of the signs. My son’s doctor informed me only a hand full of children have asthma and show no signs until the weather changes and when they try to sleep. Every time the weather changes him goes into a coughing fit. He started taking ASMANEX with the singular once a day every day since he was 6 years old. Don't miss a day and he is fine. My son just turned nine years old and we moved to Florida this year I was able to take him off his med's but if we move back to Michigan he will have to be put back on it. Good luck. I know it’s a pain. I would cry every night hearing him cough. He would cough so bad he would vomit.

Marie - posted on 09/04/2012

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If it's not her environment then do a food elimination test. Remove dairy for 7-14 days. If there's no change, slowly reintroduce dairy.



Next you can try wheat foods including bread, pasta and Goldfish. My mother is sensitive to all things grain and starts coughing withing a few hours of consuming anything containing wheat.



That's all I've got. I hope you find a solution that works for you.

Jen - posted on 09/04/2012

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My docs also say it's not in her lungs. We're weary of using the inhaler b/c I read it gives kids nightmares and worse symptoms!

Yvonne Vanden - posted on 09/04/2012

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My boy is 14 months and has had a cough sice Febuary this year when he got Broncialitis (a fancy name for a lung infection) he has had a horrible cough ever since, every Dr states it's not in his lungs so he's ok. Well he's not because there is phlem there and the poor thing can't spit it out!! The only thing I've found to kind of help is a product called prospan drops (not the syrup) very hard to find. It breaks down the mucus and relieves the cough. I got mine from Amcal on line.

My boy also has Broncial Asthma. So he has an inhaler (with a spacer) which helps him breath and eases the cough while he has a cold. I hate how the Dr's say there is nothing that can be done .... there has to be SOMETHING!!

Try the inhaler, what do you have to lose? nothing else has worked so you may aswell cross that one off the list too, if it's going to work you'll see a difference within 48hrs of using it.

good luck :-)

Julie - posted on 09/03/2012

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Both my kids needed a combination treatment of daily singulair and a nebulizer treatment 3 times a day for respiratory reactive disorder accompanied with the saline drops and cool must humidifier and Claritin when necessary. Thankfully they are starting to outgrow the problem. A nebulizer may our may not help but there are definitely other options to be explored. Oh, we did have to get rid of our dog too, even though she had hair not fur and never went near the bedrooms with her there the treatments did nothing to help so we had to give her away.

Yvette - posted on 09/03/2012

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It could be the cleaning products you clean your house with. I saw an episode on oprah where this mom was having the same problem. Once she started going green in the products she cleaned the house with, the child coughing stop.

Jessica - posted on 09/02/2012

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This happened to our son first the dr said it was allergies then bronchitis then he was fine and then the next we he was in the ER; he had been coughing for 2 months. He had RSV, maybe a new dr? That's what we did.

Tanya - posted on 09/01/2012

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Just a thought, what is causing the asthma? Try cutting all dairy out for a week or two and see if that makes a difference.

Ellen - posted on 09/01/2012

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Take your child to an allergist and see exactly is the trigger. It could be red dye, it could be flour, it could be a certain tree... you just never know until they are tested. At that point, you will know what to eliminate from their diet or environmental.

Tonia - posted on 09/01/2012

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I think asthma could be the cause,it is harder to breath when your asleep,some children do not wheeze with asthma ,just cougth. My ten year old has asthma ,diagnosed at three,she had night coughting.

Tanya - posted on 08/31/2012

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Have you considered food sensitivities? Check out Margaret Evans' book: Could It Really Be Something They Ate. We no longer get that endless runny nose and cough. Www.foodsensitivechildren.com.

Tina - posted on 08/30/2012

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It more than likely could be I know it's sets me off. Doesn't mean you have to part with them though just limit what areas of the house they go into and vacuum regularly. Just make sure the areas where your daughter mostly plays are cat free such as bedroom and loungeroom

Jen - posted on 08/30/2012

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Oh no! I've had one of my cats for 10 years and can never part with them. I sure hope it's not the cats :(

Andrea - posted on 08/30/2012

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My daughter went through the same thing, except for a couple of years. We tried Sigulair, Claritin, inhalers, antibiotics, air purifier, humidifier, pillow wedge, everything you can think of. I did own 2 cats. Took her to an allergist and turns out it was the cats. Got rid of them and after a few weeks later she was so much better! We didnt think it was the cats because she too would have the issue at cat free houses, but turns out that is just because of residual cat dander on her clothes. Even now if she is around a cat she won't always show symptoms right away, but usually that night she will cough.



She does take Claritin in the spring and fall for seasonal allergies, but other than that no issues as long as she is not exposed to cats. I would suggest taking your child to get tested for allergies.

Phumeza - posted on 08/27/2012

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My six month old baby had a flu and the GP gave him Allegex syrup, DPH cough syrup and an antibiotic but now am not sure if DPH and Allegex is suitable for a six monthly old. Can anyone help a sister out.

Drea - posted on 08/26/2012

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I have a very similar situation with my daughter. It started when she was about a month old. She is diagnosed with GERD and takes medication for it. Although it helps it doesn't completely take the acid reflux away. Then I started noticing every time we take her outside she gets the runny nose, her eyes swell, she gets wheezy, and the cough gets worse than usual. Even though the doctors say babies can't get allergies I beg to differ on that one. Just like in your child's case every night and every morning she has the coughing spells to the point where she is gagging and will puke. I have a sling that the baby sleeps in and keeps her upright. When it gets real bad I have a nebulizer I use. Maybe your child has a combination of these (asthma, allergies, and GERD) or all. I would recommend to keep doing what you are doing and do some more brainstorming with your pediatrician.

Jen - posted on 08/26/2012

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I haven't heard of Karvol until you mentioned it but I did a google search and I will definitely try it, thanks! I do try nasal drops and it is a MAJOR struggle to keep her still! I end up putting drops in her nose while she's asleep but she wakes up suddenly and throws a fit!

Bronwyn - posted on 08/25/2012

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I have a 3yr old and 6yr old who have same symptoms just theirs is accompanied with blocked noses. I've been told its a nasal drip. A nasal spray before bedtime helps and I rub a vapour rub on chests and back. Also a very mild vapour rub around nose area. Don't know if you've heard about Karvol drops. One capsule on clothing or bedding helps with peaceful sleep. Also a comfortable elevated pillow. Hope she gets better.

Ivy - posted on 08/25/2012

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Our family is quite allergetic or intolerant to a lot of things. As she has had a cough longer than 6 weeks, then it's definitely somethng that needs a specialist's attention. Don't let the doctor discourage you.



Here are somethings to think about. Washing powder, your brand could be irritating her. Sometimes it can be the chemicals in powders and liquids that irritate the body. Washing her sheets and pillows in an hypoallergenic washing powder or liquid can help. Or make you're own washing powder/liquid. Avoiding dryer sheets for her clothes and sheets as the chemicals and fragrances are often quite harsh. There are alternatives such as Eco friendly sheets or using an herb bag in the dryer. You could also put her sheets on extra rinse if you don't want to switch your detergent or use a special kind for her as it will help remove any residue. Washing sheets on hot will help kill anything living on the sheets. How often do you wash her sheets? I wash our sheets twice a week. If I don't my husband's asthma, blepharitis, and escema is worst. What kind of pillow does she have? Hypoallergenic pillows help a lot. I'm allergetic to feather pillows. So I have to have a synthic fibre pillow. If I don't have one, I cough, my nose is stuffy, and I have a hard time breathing. Changing her pillow or washing it regularly will help. I always have our duvet/comforter laundered at the dryer cleaners once or twice a year as the cover it removable. I would wash it myself, but our washer just it's able to handle it.



How often do you dust? When you dust, do you dampen a cloth? I use 1 tablespoon of vinegar in 2 cups of water. I soak the cloth for 15 minutes, then I put the second one in the solution as I use the other to dust. Wring out the cloth so it damp, but doesn't leave water behind when you wipe the surface. I rinse out the dusty one before putting it back into the solution and I switch cloths. The vinegar solution doesn't smell all that pleasant, but it doesn't linger and you can dust once every week to two weeks. It depends on how dusty your house can get. I think you said you have pets, then I'd recommend once a week. Hoover/vacuum daily when she isn't in the house. My husband needs 2-3 hours after I Hoover for air to clear, otherwise it sets off his asthma. Having the windows open in her room for 30 minutes a day can help clear out the stale and dusty air.



Also you may want to limit her intake of certain food groups to elimate any food allergies or intolerance. The most common food allergies or intolerances are to wheat, dairy, eggs, and nuts particularly peanuts. Daily yogurt will be beneficial unless she's allergetic or intolerant to dairy. It's best to get plain yogurt with good bacteria in it. You can always add fruit and locally sourced honey in it. The local part is key to helping her allergies to pollen as it introduces her body to the things that may be setting her off coughing and it slowly introduces her to it.



We use loradine and nasal spray. Also if it has been a high pollen day, it's best she change clothes. Having her change in the bathroom and leaving her clothes another place beside her room will help stop the transfer of pollens into her room.



My MIL and husband both have asthma. They both have a cough that sounds chesty. When his, my daughter's, and my cough sounds dry, it's because of our allergies. My daughter was coughing at night as well and it really ruins everyone's sleep. We figured out that her baby mattress was setting her off as we stored it under her bed. We have done all the above things mentioned and removed that mattress and her cough has almost disappeared except on really pollen days, but she's too young for allergy medicine yet here in the UK.



I would seek out another another doctor, especially one that'll listen you and test your daughter for allergies and asthma. I hope my suggestions will help.

Jen - posted on 08/25/2012

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Someone just told me recently to try local honey. I will get it today and see what happens. She does eat a lot of cheese; I would hate to take that away from her!

Melissa - posted on 08/25/2012

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Trying giving a spoonful of honey. I do that with my oldest and it takes care of it. Also maybe its a milk allergy? I cough a lot at night if i eat or drink any dairy before bed.....good luck.

Jen - posted on 08/21/2012

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My daughter still sleeps in bed with me and I am rearranging her every few minutes it seems! She does complete 180's all night, but I still prop her up on the wedge pillow. I took her to 2 different pediatricians who both had conflicting ideas. I think it's sinus related but I'm unsure whether to take her to an ENT or allergist. We already spent more than we can afford on this issue- I need someone and something to help resolve it! :(

Kimberly - posted on 08/21/2012

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I agree with most of the response. I've had 3 with that problem, all due to different conditions. My oldest was an asthma issue. If that's what it is, best to get on top of it sooner than later. His only presented itself with a cough. Unless you had a stethoscope, you couldn't tell he was wheezing. On the bright side, he is 8 now and shows little symptoms. My now 4 year old son was similar. Again, it was at night and especially when he'd wake up in the morning. He's a sinus drainage kid without allergies. Allegra and stuff do not help. He never stayed still enough for a wedge pillow to help. He has good days and not such good days. If he refuses to eat dinner it never fails that enough of the drainage that ends up in his empty stomach ends up making him vomit. Onto my 3 year old, she was about your daughters age and hers turned out to be acid reflux. I don't know if that had anything to do with her being a little early or not, but the pediatrician had me give her Maalox. Maybe I missed it in the posts but, I wasn't sure if you're taking her to an actual pediatrician or gp. If it's a gp, I strongly recommend seeing a pediatrician. If they don't help, I agree with the posts suggesting a pediatric allergist. Those general allergy meds don't cover everything. Besides that, they would be able to diagnose any sinus issues too. Again, as my son shows, not all sinus issues are due to allergies. Hope this helps.

Katherine - posted on 08/20/2012

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That's odd that she doesn't cough during play......maybe you need to elevate her head at night so she can breathe more easily?

Bekah - posted on 08/20/2012

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It sounds a lot like GERD which almost always causes a cough and worsens when laying down, even sleeping slightly elevated may not be a good enough fix. Try to eliminate all foods within 1-2 hours before bed. You can give her antiacids before bed to try and help.

Is she coughing anything up? Do you hear any audible wheezing or rattling when she is awake? I'm assuming she hasn't run a fever correct?
And you said you have pets - has she had an allergy test to see if it could be them - a trip to the allergist may be in order as well.

Alexandra - posted on 08/20/2012

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My daughter also started coughing and we did everythink the doctors told us to do but she kept on coughing untill we went to her pediatrician and ask those type of question so she said that it was all in her head she was making her self to cough to get that special attention they get when they are sick she told us to not make a big deal out of it we did that and she stoped but it took a well for to stop. i dont know if this is the same situation with your daughter, but i hope it helps.

Jen - posted on 08/20/2012

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She usually only coughs upon waking but sometimes in the middle of the night too. Rarely does she cough during play or other activities.

Alexandra - posted on 08/20/2012

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this sounds familiar does your child cough during the night? does your child cough when playing or distraced with something does she cough more before she falls asleep and when she wakes up and during the day?

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