Some Simple yet Useful Tips to Protect Your Toddler from Coughing At Night

Children are the most susceptible to viral diseases. So, it is not something new to parents to see their toddler coughing at night. It is supposed to be a nightmare of every parent which no one wants to face it. It is not just the fact that there is a need to wake up to attend to their needs. Rather, parents seeing their child in such condition would feel pity. Pity in a sense, that, the child is still so small to endure the itchiness in their throats let alone cough out. It also makes parents apprehensive because this can worsen and might lead to more serious illnesses.

​In cases such as this, it is best to handle the situation earlier before it aggravates. But before you ran to your pediatrician on such an unholy hour, find ways to soothe the child first. Here is information that you need to master and ready yourself in cases like this.


What are the Causes of Toddlers’ Coughs?

A toddler’s cough is mainly caused by irritation of the throat layering. This occurs in times when the child’s body is combating certain ailment thus there is an increase in the phlegm production. A respiratory disorder is another cause of toddler coughing at night too. As the phlegm increase, the tendency of the body is to cough it out just like adults do. With the coughing or wheezing, the air passage is gradually cleared from phlegm allowing air to pass through to the lungs and normalizing the breathing. On the overall, coughing is considered as a body reflex to ease the respiration process.


A child’s cough commonly worsens when they continue in a lying position. This is so since phlegm could accumulate in their throats while others are prone to swallowing them. Subsequently, these little ones are not yet aware of spitting out the phlegm. This can cause vomiting or can likewise upset their stomach. It is best for parents to keep a watchful eye on the child even at the onset of a cough when you hear wheezing sounds. This is an indication of a running nose, difficulty of breathing and even fever. It is helpful to note that there are different types of coughs and with various treatments. Learn more as we tackle the kinds of coughs.

What Are The Kinds Of Coughs?

1 - A Dry Cough

This type of cough is triggered once the upper end of the respiratory tract is infected producing this dry cough. Respiratory anomalies such as asthma, bronchitis, and pneumonia are also the contributor to dry cough formation. You should notice this thing if your baby is suffering from this form of ailments.

2 - A Croup Cough

Development of a croup cough relates to the swelling of the upper portion of the windpipe or trachea as effects of viral attacks. This manifests a barking sound as the vocal chords swell. Once you noticed this piercing sound, you will know that your child has a croup cough.

3 - A Wet Cough

Another type of cough is revealed through fluid or mucus discharges coming from the lower portion of the respiratory tract such as the windpipe and even the lungs. Respiratory-related illnesses such as asthma and other infections are the probable causes of this type of cough. The child resorts to coughing to clear his airways from fluids.


4 - A Whopping Cough

The main characteristic of a whopping cough is the series of staccato sound when coughing. These are usually in quick successive motion. Its symptoms are comparable to any ordinary cough but with episodes of wheezing during sleep. The child is observed to take deep long breaths while creating whooping sounds. In this case, the child will have difficulty in breathing as an effect of the low oxygen supply in his body.

Therapies For A Child’s Cough

Since the four types of cough have been previously discussed, parents are already aware of which of these coughs their babies are suffering with. This gives them the edge in understanding and in choosing treatments methods in such event. Below are lists of activities parents can initiate to stop a toddler coughing at night.

  • Hydrate newborn babies through regular intake of fluids for example water and slightly warm soup. This will loosen the mucus and prevent it from adhering to the walls of the respiratory tract. It likewise relieves the child’s throat from further irritation as well as soreness.
  • A therapy using water vapor can also be done but should strictly follow a set of instructions on proper methods for use. Take note that the patient here is a child and as always when we deal with them utmost care should prevail.
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    • Place a warm wet towel in a child’s room.
    • Use humidifiers if possible
    • Run the shower setting at the warmest level then shut the door of the bathroom. You should continue until the bathroom area is fully packed with steam. Bring in the baby and let him sit on your lap for at least 10 minutes. Try to divert his attention by singing some lullaby or reading short stories out loud. The entertaining part will help calm down the kid effectively since he tends to fear the unusual temperature inside the room.
  • On the case of a coup cough, cool breeze is needed. The coolness of the air will help ease the inflammation of the respiratory passage thereby controlling the cough. Follow with utmost care the set of treatment instructions listed for treatment:
    • Bring the child nearer to an open window allowing them to breathe the cool breeze.
    • Another option is to let them inhale air coming from your open refrigerator.
    • Otherwise, take the child for a spin around the block in your car. Open the car window while doing so.

If all else fails, never shrink from referring your child’s condition to your pediatrician. For sure he will be able to recommend other treatments in the form of medication.

​Let me reiterate to never administer any kind of medicine to a child without proper consultation and prescription. However, for easy understanding, there are two types of medication for coughs.

  • An expectorant is used to loosen the mucus membrane and is ideal for wet coughs.
  • Cough depressant is ideal for dry coughs to stop itchiness in the throat preventing one from coughing.

But there is a preventive measure that the family can have to protect viral disease from invading their homes. This is the D-tap vaccine. It is good to note that this is regularly part of a child’s immunization schedule in most countries.


Understanding the nature of a cough ailment and their remedies helps to relieve your baby from coughing at night thus, preventing distressful conditions both for children and parents alike. However, if such treatments seem to be fruitless in curing your child’s cough, don’t take kid’s health for granted by delaying a visit to the doctor, and this is a must. Remember start curing minor illnesses before they get worst for in such cases, time is of the essence.


I’m Elizabeth J. Johnson, a 30-year-old from sunny California. I have married to a wonderful man & have 2 little girls. They are the cutest lover, the sweetest hugger & the best inspiration.

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