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What are different types of coughs?

People cough for many different reasons -- and there are many different types of coughs. Here are a few types you can have:
  • A cough with mucus. Your cough may bring up globs of sticky fluid called mucus. The mucus may be clear, yellow, green, or tan.
  • A dry cough. A dry cough doesn't bring up mucus. It may start with a tickly feeling.
  • A cough with a noise. You can have a cough that sounds like a seal barking. Or, you can have a cough with wheezing. Wheezing is a whistling sound when you breathe in or out.
  • A cough that lasts for weeks or months. Some coughs last a long time. You may cough throughout the day or just at night. Or, you may cough only when you do certain things (like exercise) or during certain times of the year. If you go to the doctor or clinic because of your cough, the doctor may ask which type of cough you have. Your answer may help the doctor know what's causing your cough.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.