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Children's health

29th Jan 2024

How is whooping cough treated? What you need to know as cases rise

Kat O'Connor

Whooping cough has been named the ‘100-day cough’

Winter is a difficult time for parents with multiple viruses and bugs circulating for weeks. It’s impossible to dodge them all, with some children suffering from multiple doses throughout the winter months.

One we all dread is whooping cough because it seems like it never ends. The persistent cough seems to linger for months after a child contracts it, but how is it treated?

Whooping cough cases tend to increase during the winter months, but doctors have stressed that there are many treatments for the ‘100-day cough’.

The key treatment for whooping cough is antibiotics, which will be given to your child by the GP. Doctors have stressed that treating the illness within the first three weeks is crucial, especially to help avoid bacterial infections.

Contracting a bacterial infection can hinder recovery and can cause extreme discomfort in younger children.

Parents have been advised against treating whooping cough with over-the-counter medicines like cough syrups because they won’t ease symptoms. Antibiotics are the key treatment plan, but some remedies can help ease symptoms.

Doctors have suggested giving your child herbal teas, such as chamomile tea to ease the pain. This is also a great way to help them sleep as the herbal tea can help them unwind.

How to ease symptoms in children

Another thing you can use is honey and lemon in hot water, but do not give this to children who are under 12 months old.

You should also avoid giving herbal teas to babies who are under six months.

The main symptoms of whooping cough include long bouts of coughing, as well as choking as your child may struggle to catch their breath.

Parents have been told to contact their GP if they’re concerned about their child’s health. Seeking urgent medical care is key in treating whooping cough.

Women can get the whooping cough vaccine during pregnancy to help prevent their infant from getting it.