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British Lung Foundation
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cough on giving up smoking

over the past 2 years I've cut down smoking by 2 thirds, then 10 weeks ago I was told I have copd, so i've stopped smoking altoghter, however I've managed to get myself an irrating cough, feels like I need to cough something up, and never quite manage to do it, has anyone else experienced this? On the one hand I do feel so much better using the inhalers, but this cough is so annoying, any idea's of what I can take to sooth this? All answers will be greatly appricated, many thanks medow

8 Replies

my husband gave upsmoking 21 years ago and to be honest he never got rid of his smokers cough, I always knew when he was coming home, could hear him on the road, and could always find him in the supermarket.



I was diagnosed with Mild COPD in March 2011, I gave up smoking in 2010 and for ages I had a irritating cough, still have the cough and bring up clear spit. Such an irritating thing sometimes I take the black HALLS cough sweet makes no difference but fells like a clear breath I take.

David 1968


I think you should give it more time medow. Its very common to have a cough when you stop smoking and this can last a time. Its your lungs clearing themselves of all the nicotine and tar, which is a good thing.

In the meantime try drinking tepid water or fruit juice to help dilute the mucus. You could also try steam which does work. Get a bowl of hot water and cover your head etc. with a towel and breathe it in. Do this on a regular basis.

I find Jakemans cough sweets very good - you can get them from any chemist but cheap from superdrug.

Finally if you use an inhaler perhaps use it a bit more.

Hope this helps. Bev x


Uncle Joes MInt Balls - uncle-joes.com/

Listen to Mike Harding singing the virtues of these miraculous sweets...


Here's the words if you want to sing along...


Not a joke, they sell these all over the world, including Harvey Nichols and Harrods. And, in the history info, it says "Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls were extremely popular with miners; not only because they were a good replacement for tobacco but also because the combined action of sucking and the peppermint oil would keep their lungs free of dust."

When I feel that I've got some mucus to shift I pull out my tin of Uncle Joes. The only complaint I have is that they're not cheap.


Try the chefs

the recipe is in there


Hi, this cough may not just be a result of smoking. It is possible you have reflux. Although you may not feel the acid burning sensation in your throat, acid may leak up the oesophagus and irritate the back of your throat causing you to cough; giving a sensation of always needing to swallow and clear the back of the throat. I know this can happen because this is what it was like for me. Speak to your doctor. Maybe Omeprazole will do the trick as it has for many. Goodluck.


thank you everybody for your replys, and thank you for introducing me to 'uncle joe's (mint) balls', really made me giggle and boy do I need a giggle, will check out with the dr about reflux midwife 11, thank you for the advise. And will also get some jakemans cough sweets, I am finding all this so very hard, trying to stay positive, some days I'm really ok, other day's feels like my life is just about copd now, I need to find my new normal, guess it's going to take quite a while, but hey, this site is great, and it's wonderful have so much support around, my next step is to get to a breath easy group, I have joined the gym and will be going along this coming friday, thank you all medow x


lemon drop !!!!! Issac's balls !!! now I'm laughing too much to go to bed !! thank you


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