Suppressing the urge to cough

This section will give you tips and exercises to help you with coughing and coughing fits. 


  1.  Breathing in and out of your nose instead of your mouth.
  2. Sucking on boiled sweets or lollipops.
  3. Having regular drinks breaks / sips of fluids.

Stop cough exercise

As soon as you feel the urge to cough, close your mouth and cover it with your hand (SMOTHER the cough). At the same time, make yourself SWALLOW. STOP breathing – take a pause. When you start to breathe again, breathe in and out through your nose SOFTLY.

“Smother – Swallow – Stop – Soft” is a good way to remember this exercise.

If you need to cough, try to cough into a tissue or the crease of your elbow and over 2 metres away from other people. Always wash your hands for 20 seconds after you cough.

If you cough at night, try lying in a different position and / or use pillows to prop yourself up.

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