The Anatomy of a Cough Medicine

by Vincent on April 17, 2013

A cough medicine, or linctus when in a form of syrup, refers to a substance that is used in an attempt to cure coughing or other related illnesses.

cough syrupThe Types of Cough Medicines

Different forms of coughing are addressed using different kinds of cough remedies. Dry cough, or coughing that does not produce phlegm, should be treated using suppressants or antitussives to stop it from developing any further. On the other hand, productive coughs, or coughing that comes with phlegm, should be treated using expectorants. Such substances would aid in loosening the mucus that accumulates inside the respiratory tract.


Some examples of commonly used cough remedies include codeine, bromhexine, guaifenesin and honey.

  • Codeine is once considered as the gold standard when it comes to suppressing cough. Evidence proves that it acts to the medulla to increase the verge for cough triggers.
  • Bromhexine is a mucolytic that feats on the early stages of the formation of mucus across the glands inside cells that secrete mucus. This would then trigger the production of less viscid mucous that is easier to expel out of the body.
  • Guafenesin refers to an expectorant that is believed to implicitly increase the output of fluids inside the respiratory tract thus aiding into the formation of less viscous mucus secretions.
  • Lastly, honey is claimed to be a minimally effective cough medicine. Accordingly, it is assumed to help in making the respiratory tract smoother and finer.

Considerations When Buying Any Cough Medicines

It is important to consider certain things before buying a cough remedy for failure to do so could risk someone’s life. It is a must to consider the authenticity of the product to avoid unwanted incidents. For instance, there have been a couple of recorded cases of poisoning from cheap diethylene glycol. It should also be considered whether one is allergic to a particular remedy or not. As such, asking for the assistance of a physician would be more than helpful.

Efficacy of Cough Remedies

The absolute efficacy of cough remedies is yet to be proven. Several researchers are speculating that their effects could be merely placebo. As such, people should be alarmed about persisting extents of respiratory tract illnesses and ask for the help of a doctor immediately.

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