If you don’t have a coughing problem during the day but only overnight while you sleep, acid reflux isn’t the only potential cause.
You may not even be aware of repeated coughing throughout your sleep, while other members in the household will hear it.
If they tell you that you cough throughout the night, take them seriously and find out what the cause is.
Often, the cause is acid reflux — making its way to the throat and irritating the larynx. This is called LPR: laryngopharyngeal reflux.
It doesn’t always come with heartburn, either. Sometimes, chest symptoms are absent, and the symptoms occur only in the throat.
Nevertheless, you should not self-diagnose.
Don’t guess; make an appointment with your physician, who may end up referring you to a specialist to uncover the cause.
Of course this idea is always scary, but the cause may be very benign and easily fixed.
“Common causes of an overnight cough include asthma (often worse at night), a sinus infection or an allergy (especially consider things in the bedroom such as carpeting, dusty drapes, pets or dust mites found in bedding),” says Arielle Levitan, MD, board certified in internal medicine and co-founder of Vous Vitamin LLC and co-author of “The Vitamin Solution: Two Doctors Clear the Confusion About Vitamins and Your Health.”
Dr. Levitan is board certified in internal medicine and has a special interest in women’s health and preventive medicine.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. She’s also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.