Whooping cough is a medical condition also known as pertussis. It is caused by the bacteria caused by Bordetella pertussis. The ailment is highly contagious, affecting as much as 48.5 million people every year; of these, almost 300,000 die. This ailment causes persistent coughing that could last for weeks. This is the reason why it is also known as the cough of 100 days or 100 days’ cough.
Treatment options for whooping cough are not very promising, offering little to no effect to the ailment although these can help alleviate some of the symptoms. Thus, prevention is still the best recourse in dealing with this ailment. The good news is that vaccines are already readily available to prevent whopping cough. In fact, these vaccines are mandated by the World Health Organization to be administered to children. Since the vaccines were introduced, the incidence and mortalities have lowered down.
Whooping Cough Causes
- Whooping cough is a respiratory infection that is triggered by a bacterium called Bordetella pertussis. It basically thrives only in human throats.
- Once the bacteria are inside the body, it not only affects the throat, but also the windpipe or the trachea and the tubes, or the bronchi that branch off from the trachea. The bacteria multiply and produce pollutants that disrupt the ability of the respiratory tract to wipe away the germs. This will cause the airways to be filled with mucus, which prompts the active and uncontrollable coughing to begin.
- Once infected with whooping cough, the disease is easily transmitted by other nearby persons. The tiny droplets emitted during a cough, sneeze, or a laugh will hold and put the bacteria in the air. When another individual breathes it in or gets their hands on them and touch their nose or their mouth, the bacteria will infect another person. The symptoms will not appear immediately though, after about seven days or a 2 weeks later.
Whooping Cough Symptoms:
Once an individual becomes contaminated with whooping cough, the symptoms still takes days to appear, three to twelve days at the average. The first signs of pertussis would be mild that resembles like the regular colds such as:
- Runny nose
- Dry cough
- A slight fever
- Nasal congestion
- Watery, red eyes
- Loss of appetite
- A general feeling of being unwell
Symptoms usually depend on whether you have had the vaccine, no matter how long ago it was. Adults would have milder symptoms shown rather than children. Among young children there are three stages of the disease that are expected to occur and that may not always be the same for adults.
- The first stage would resemble that of having colds. The entire stage would be spent with the sneeze, runny nose, watery eyes, mild cough, and even a mild fever. This may last for as long as two weeks, and this stage would be the time the patient is spreading the disease.
- The second stage would worsen the cough. The cold symptoms may be better, but the coughing becomes uncontrollable until the patient experiences difficulty in breathing. After all the coughing, there is a tendency to vomit. This stage would normally last from two to four weeks.
- The third stage would be spent feeling better, but the coughing becomes louder.
- Inspiratory whoop
- Vomiting after coughing
- Paroxysmal cough
Side Effects Of Whooping Cough
This is not just a simple cough as it can also cause the following:
- Rib fractures
- Vertebral artery dissection
- Urinary incontinence
- Fainting after coughing
Natural Remedies For Whooping Cough
There are various home treatment for whooping cough. With the right homeopathic treatment, the curative period of the disease may be shortened. These natural cures can be very effective and useful:
- Garlic: A teaspoon of the juice extract of garlic will help relieve whooping cough. The patient can also soak the garlic in almond water overnight, then peel and grind them with sugar candy. The patient should eat this. It is expected to heal the whooping cough in 2 to 3 days. Putting a garland of cloves of garlic on the chest together with garlic oil would also relieve coughing.
- Maize: The maize cob is burned and ground into fine powder. A half teaspoon of it taken up to four times daily together with hot water would help relieve the coughing caused by whooping cough.
- Coconut Oil: Drinking 4 ml of pure coconut oil every six hours is a good treatment for pertussis.
- Sugarcane mixed with radish juice also helps.
- Basil leaves: All the patient needs to do is to grind basil leaves together with the same amount of black pepper and made into a small pill. Then, the patient needs to take this in four times a day.