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You may think, “Why am I coughing for no reason?”

It can be due to multiple reasons. 

You may refer to it as a nagging cough as well.

Mostly, it’s due to an irritation or clearing of airways. But sometimes, it can hang around for days, weeks, or even months. Hence, this may be an indication of infection.

Coughing is one of the best ways to tell you that something is wrong with you. Even if you feel healthy and everything seems fine. However, having a stubborn situation when you’re fine is annoying. 

Fortunately, there are plenty of causes behind your uncomfortable condition. Find out all you need to know about this irritation and some underlying reasons below.

Most Common Causes of Nagging Cough

Woman in blue shirt coughing - What Does It Mean W…ough That Won't Go Away, but I'm Not Sick - CA | I Have a Cough That Won't Go Away But I'm Not Sick: FAQs | What Does It Mean When I Have a Cough That Won't Go Away, but I'm Not Sick

To clarify, it’s a misconception that you can’t get these annoying symptoms if you’re not sick. On the contrary, you are capable of coughing even when you’re feeling on top of your game. Since the causes of cough vary quite a bit, we’ll explore the most common ones. 

  1. A natural way of your body to clear respiratory tract allergens

Coughing is one of the body’s most important mechanisms. It helps your body to get rid of foreign irritants or clears your throat of mucus. You can experience coughing, especially when dust, phlegm, mucus, and other allergies gather up in your windpipes and lungs. 

A discussion about Occupational and Environmental Contributions to Chronic Cough in Adults. This article shares the causes involving environmental triggers.

  1. Reactive Airway Disease Because of a Cold or the Flu

Have you gotten over a common cold recently? An infection can have an apparent lingering effect after your body has healed and you feel fine; this is because of the mucus buildup in your throat (Postnasal drip). Consequently, coughing is how your body tries to get rid of it. 

The mucus builds up in your sinuses and nasal passages and then keeps dripping down the back of your throat. Thus, creating the tickle sensation, which results in whooping cough. So when you expel out, it’s your body trying to remove the cold left behind. 

  1. Asthma leading to dry cough

Besides coughing, asthma includes other symptoms such as chest pain, wheezing, and difficulty breathing. But there are times that the only symptom when you have asthma, is a persistent cough. So, it can be hard for you to diagnose it without healthcare professionals’ help. 

Chronic Cough Due to Asthma: ACCP Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guidelines – It says that asthma may be a fundamental cause of these regular episodes. 

  1. Side Effect from Medication 

ACE inhibitor medications are a group of drugs used to treat heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, etc. They are usually responsible for a persistent dry cough.

 “ACE inhibitors for blood pressure often cause a chronic dry cough,” says David Hill, MD, clinical research director at Waterbury Pulmonary Associates in Waterbury, CT, and a volunteer medical spokesperson for the American Lung Association.

Bronchial Hyperreactivity and Cough due to Angiotensin-converting Enzyme Inhibitors – As per this research paper, people with asthma or other chronic respiratory disorder should not be given such type of medicine. This is because it can lead to medical emergencies as well.

Find out more on drug-induced cough here and consult with your doctor if you use any of such medications.

  1. Post-Nasal Drip (Mucus drainage at the back of the throat)

Post-nasal drip syndrome is the primary cause of frequent respiratory illness. It often occurs when you have chronic rhinitis, also known as upper airway cough syndrome, also known as stuffy nose. 

When you have this, you will be experiencing the sensation of liquid dripping down behind your throat. For this reason, coughing helps you to clear the toxins away.Chronic Upper Airway Cough Syndrome Secondary to Rhinosinus Diseases (Previously Referred to as Postnasal Drip Syndrome): This article discusses the conversion of respiratory tract infection from an acute to a chronic situation.

  1. Acid Reflux and Sore throat

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can be the cause of throat soreness. This symptom occurs after having food when some of your stomach acid reaches your throat. Therefore, you feel discomfort or irritation, which makes you cough as a result. People with GERD tend to have trouble swallowing and have to clear their throats continuously. 

Read this in-detail study: A Causal Relationship Between Cough and Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) has been established: A Pro/Con Debate

  1. Smoking

Everyone knows smoking is not good for your health, especially your chest. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, cigarette smoking accounts for about 1 in 5 deaths in the United States. Accordingly, your disease could be due to chronic bronchitis, where cumulative lung damage prevents the body’s normal ability to clear particles.

Have a look at this research: Indoor and outdoor smoking.

Is it normal to be coughing for no reason? Is it a chronic cough?

Perhaps you are wondering how to differentiate between a regular and a disease of coughing. Firstly, if it lasts in less than three weeks, it indicates acute illness. On the other hand, improvement after three to eight weeks are considered subacute. 

Secondly, most coughs tend to clear up or significantly improve within 14 days. Thirdly, if it lasts longer than eight weeks, then it’s a chronic infection. This kind of chronicity can be the initial sign of many health concerns. Such as heart disease, stomach disease, allergy, respiratory infections, the flu, or even COVID-19.

How to Get Rid of a Cough When I’m Not Sick?

Male smoker coughing while smoking - How to Get Ri…ough That Won't Go Away, but I'm Not Sick - CA | I Have a Cough That Won't Go Away But I'm Not Sick: FAQs | How to Get Rid of It When I Have a Cough That Won't Go Away, but I'm Not Sick

You can only get rid of nasal and throat infection after knowing the reason behind it; you can easily find its solution depending on the condition. Firstly, some light must be shed on the cause. So you are no longer in the dark thinking you are coughing for no reason.

If the cause of your cough is some allergic reaction from foreign irritants such as smoke or pollen, taking an anti-allergy medication can solve the problem.

Also, make sure your indoor environment is free from allergens and toxins. It is advisable to use different types of ar cleaning devices. Installing a ventilation system should be a must.

Precaution: Do visit your doctor in case this condition comes with:

  • Significant loss of weight 
  • Mucus with blood
  • Weakness
  • Severe pain in one or more parts of the body
  • Any other unusual sign

You might have no idea what’s irritating your throat. Thus, the best idea to recover from that whooping cough is to seek medical advice. Peter M. Small, M.D Professor, Department of Medicine, and Chief Medical Officer at Hyfe, says, “Patients seek care very late in the disease, and part of that is because we, as a society, tend to ignore coughing in adults. Acoustic AI as pioneered by Hyfe is changing all of that.

The next best thing you can do is keep a close eye on your health. Moreover, keep track of it every day. Hyfe has developed an application that aids in tracking and monitoring the cough 24/7. And it is free to download on your mobile devices.

AI technology records every time you are coughing. The data gets stored. You can show this to your doctor. They will have a head start on diagnosis and treatment.

What do you think is the best route when you have a common cold or respiratory tract issue? Let us know in the comment section below! Hyfe uses artificial intelligence to identify the coughing pattern. It counts every single time and allows you to track it over time. These features provide you with objective insights into daily illness. Furthermore, it can help you monitor your health in the context of pollution, asthma, or even COVID-19. Stay fit by monitoring your cough with Hyfe.



  1. Hie a have a cough that is not going away l have taking different types of cough syrups antibiotics ,it’s been 2 months now also taking herbs but still no change ,l am not sick just the cough and now l am tied of it please help

    • Hi Penia,

      I am sorry to hear about how your cough is impacting your quality of life.
      Also would like to thank you for reading our blog.

      First and foremost, I must stress that you must seek a physician for medical advice and treatment. If you have already seen a doctor and still feel you need support, consider seeking a second opinion.

      Have you tried out installing the app and let it acquire at least a few days of the amount of cough you do daily? If you do this, the next time you go to the doctor, you can communicate a lot more in terms of how you are doing.

      Wishing you well

  2. I have cough for about 4 or 5 months. And i only have cough at night, without mucus when i cough. What do i do? I had already met 2 different doctor. The result of my xray is ok but still i have cough. they said i have allergy and postnasal drip but the medicine i take did not suit to it. I am very annoyed with my cough till now i suffered a dry cough most specially at night.

    I take levocetirizine and muntilukast.

    • Mabelle, I am sorry to hear about how your cough is affecting your quality of life.

      First and foremost, I must stress that you must seek a physician for medical advice and treatment. Since you have already seen two doctors and still feel you need support, consider having a frank conversation with your GP and ask him or her whether a certain specialist might complement their efforts regarding your care.

      Have you tried out installing the app and let it acquire at least a few days of the amount of cough you do daily? If you do this, the next time you go to the doctor, you can communicate a lot more in terms of how you are doing.

      Since you mentioned you cough at night. I suggest you check out this article we did a while back focused on coughing at night.

      Wishing you well

  3. Almost once a year I suffer from a never ending dry cough. Once I start talking the cough starts. If I don’t talk I don’t cough. It will linger on for one to two months.

    • Hello Salman,
      I am sorry to hear that you have a cough that drastically affects your quality of life.

      Hyfe can be valuable for you and your healthcare providers to better understand your cough dynamics.

      However, we must stress that it is of utmost importance you seek a physician for medical advice and treatment.

  4. I have a dry hacking cough for at least 4 months now. It is getting worse than better. What do I need to do to get rid of it? I am an x smoker for 23 years. Can that be my problem?

    • Hello Betty,

      Thank you so much for reading us and for reaching out.

      Regarding your question:
      Hyfe can be valuable for users to develop a better understanding of their cough dynamics, but medical questions and treatment are best discussed with one’s physician.

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