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The Difference between Congestion, Dry Cough And Chesty Cough

Updated on September 3, 2011

Chest Congestion

Cough is a protective reflex action that helps clear irritants or blockages from the respiratory passages.

Chest congestion can be defined as the feeling of congestion of the chest due to the infection and followed by the accumulation of mucous which is infected of not infected in the lower respiratory tract, the common symptoms as follows:

- Tightness of chest

  • Difficulty in breathing so called labored breathing
  • Difficulty in talking
  • Patient cannot do any heavy work
  • Deep congested cough, which can be identified by the voice of cough. The cough usually with yellow or greenish or bloody gray sputum need fast attention.

It’s a condition which needs the medical aid as fast as possible, as it may lead to the blue condition called cyanosis due to the lack of oxygenation in blood. Fever and symptoms of septicemia always present with the chest congestion. Congestion always need medical attention to reduce the breathing difficultly. Congestion also can be caused by the heart conditions, or hepatic complications, or some metastatic conditions of the thorax.

Dry Cough

The dry cough is usually a symptom, which does not produce any mucous or sputum. It is usually a reflex reaction of the body when foreign particles enter into the lungs or bronchial tubes. It can also be produced by allergy to certain things like fumes, chemicals, or chronic laryngeal irritations etc.

Cases of so called bronchial asthma or allergic asthma usually produce dry cough. Smoking is one of the main causes for dry cough. Dry cough sometimes produces cracks on the throat and may be result in blood in mouth cause of the injured mucous membrane not from lung tissue. Drinking lot of water will help to prevent the dryness of the throat and routine living habits always help to reduce the allergic reactions.

Chest Cough

Chesty cough is characterized by the phlegm or so called mucous. It can be greenish, yellowish, grayish or bloody ones, depending up on the type of inflammation. Productive or chesty cough usually presents a characterized sound. Usually the white sputum or colorless sputum usually indicates the absence of any superadded infection on the mucous membrane. But greenish or yellowish sputum always indicate the presence of added bacterial infection in lung. It usually needs antibiotics for the cure of the condition. This type of cough may be an indication of underlying chronic disease condition like emphysema, pneumonia etc. It can be also seen in right heart failures’.

The cough usually treated with underlying disease in mind. Medicines like antihistamines are used more in allergic or dry cough. Bronchodilators used for the asthmatic dry coughs.

      The help of antibiotics are always necessary in almost all cases of congestion, chesty cough or productive type of cough especially if the mucous is colored in appearance. It is always important and necessary to find out the root cause before starting the treatment and the causative organism of the infection by some sputum analysis. 


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    • LensMan999 profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from Trans-Neptunian region

      Hi drdspervez and thastar,

      Thanks for leaving the comment. Drinking plenty of water is the best remedy to avoid dry cough.

    • thastar profile image


      8 years ago

      thanks for your comment on dry cough i know no what can cause dry there any home remedy that i can take?.

    • drdspervez profile image


      8 years ago from Pakistan

      It's a very nice article on cough and I rated you up. :)



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