Babies, just like everyone else, cough for a variety of reasons. Most of the time coughs result from something irritating the throat/breathing track. Coughs can mean nothing, or they can be serious.

Any cough that seems to be getting worse or lasting greater than a week probably warrants a trip to the pediatrician, even if no other symptoms are present.

A baby who is coughing and has a fever should also be seen by a pediatrician.

Coughs can be “wet” or “dry” – with the difference being the presence of mucus, phlegm, or sputum.

Most of the time a cough, even if frequent, doesn’t require immediate attention UNLESS you notice difficulty breathing, the baby is wheezing, or if the lips turn blue. If this happens, call 911 – don’t waste time calling a pediatrician or driving to their offices.

Mark Patton, MD