How to Help Children Who are Coughing Up Mucus

Dealing with your own persistent cough can be difficult enough, but it's worse watching your child in discomfort. And while a child coughing up mucus sometimes requires medical attention, other times your best bet is waiting it out. That doesn't mean you can't relieve your child's symptoms with over-the-counter treatments, though. Use these guidelines to figure out how to help a child coughing up mucus — and when you should visit your pediatrician.

Sometimes, a pesky, productive cough comes along with a range of other oh-so-wonderful cold and flu symptoms — but other times, you're mainly concerned with the coughing and mucus. If that's the case, reach for Children’s Mucinex® Chest Congestion. It contains guaifenesin, an expectorant. That means that it helps thin and break up mucus, which may make it easier for your child to cough up, clearing the congestion.

How much your child needs depends on his age. Kids aged six to 12 can take one to two teaspoons (5 to 10 mL) every four hours, for a maximum of six doses daily. Younger — ages four to six — can take one-half to one teaspoon (2.5 to 5 mL) every four hours. Children under age four should not take Children’s Mucinex® Chest Congestion, however.

Children coughing up mucus from the cold or flu often have other uncomfortable symptoms, too. So you should look for over-the-counter options that offer multi-symptom relief.

Children’s Mucinex® Stuffy Nose & Cold, for example, may offer relief for both chest congestion and a stuffy nose for kids four years of age or older. Children age six to 12 can take 10 mL (two teaspoons) every four hours, for a maximum of six doses daily, while children age four to six should take a lower dose of five mL (one teaspoon) every four hours, for a maximum of six doses daily.

If your child is grappling with even more symptoms — like a sore throat, stuffy nose, fever and headache — and she's six years of age or older, try Children’s Mucinex® Multi-Symptom Cold & Fever instead. It combines mucus-clearing guaifenesin with pain relief, cough suppression and nasal decongestant to help your child feel better. Children ages six to 12 can take a 10 mL (two teaspoons) dose every four hours, up to five times a day, for up to five days in a row.

Soothing a coughing child is difficult enough — but if he won't swallow syrup, it's even harder. We've got your back. Children’s Mucinex® Chest Congestion Mini-Melts™ provide relief for children four years of age and older. Simply empty the medicated powder onto your child's tongue and direct him to swallow for seriously relief sans syrup.

Children 12 years or older can take two to four packets every four hours (up to six doses daily). Kids age six to 12 can take one to two packets every four hours, while children age four to six can take one packet every four hours.

In addition to relieving your child's cough with over-the-counter medication, try:

  • Checking her mouth: Some coughs might stem from inhaled food or small objects.
  • Taking it easy: Encourage your child to get plenty of rest to fight off a cold or flu virus
  • Seeking medical attention: If your child is having difficulty breathing or makes strange noises when she breathes, seek emergency medical attention if her lips or skin take on a blue tint.