Is Mucinex bad? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 33 Old 01-26-2007, 09:28 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ds1 has the killer hacking cough that just won't go away. He's really only had it since Monday, but he coughs all day and it's driving me nuts.

I've given him extra vitamin C, bought Ricola cough drops, made him tea, had him drink warm water with honey and lemon, had him hang out in a steamy bathroom. He's still hacking (right now).

What else should I try?

Our next door neighbor (who sent their sick kid over and gave him the hacking cough) said that Mucinex was what worked for them. But they're pretty mainstream and probably didn't try much else.

Is Mucinex bad?

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#2 of 33 Old 01-26-2007, 10:05 PM
 
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My only question to that would be is Mucinex a drug?

Over the counter medicine type of drug?


Or is it a homeopathic/natural herbal healing aid?

I have never heard of Mucinex but I absolutely do not give my grandchilren drugs. NONE!

Do you have whiskey at home? A 1/4 of a teaspoon will do a lot more good. IMO
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#3 of 33 Old 01-26-2007, 10:19 PM
 
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mucinex is Guaifenesin....Ive take Robitussin's guiafenesin before to loosen chest congestion....not sure if its good or bad but it did help clear out junk. Dont know if it would stop a cough
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#4 of 33 Old 01-26-2007, 10:23 PM
 
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Stop using and call your doctor if: you get nervous, dizzy or sleepless.

Contains: aluminum, food coloring, sodium...


I would go to the health food store tomorrow and get
the items that I always give my grandchildren.

I would also get the homeopathic healing aid - Drossera

JMO
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#5 of 33 Old 01-26-2007, 10:23 PM
 
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I have taken it to loosen my cervical mucous when I'm taking fertility drugs. I haven't ever given it to my kid, but my understanding is that it is generally pretty safe as far as OTCs go. There are definitely herbal expectorants out there if you feel like he needs to loosen the mucous. A humidifier helps, and you can add essential oils to the humidifier to add a boost. HTH
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#6 of 33 Old 01-26-2007, 10:35 PM
 
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If you have a Chinese pharmacy near you (or an acupuncturist who sells herbal medicines) try this: Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa, Oral demulcent sore throat syrup - many times referred to as Loquat syrup. It says sore throat - but it is awesome for coughs. My acupuncturist and ds' acupuncturist both recommend it. It has a strong but not unpleasant taste. You do have to take it fairly frequently, but it works.
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#7 of 33 Old 01-26-2007, 11:21 PM
 
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It's not all that effective for a hacking cough, unfortunately. Codeine is the only thing that really suppresses a nighttime cough. It's not worth cracking a rib over (btdt) & lack of sleep is more deadly than 'drugs' (what's drugs? herbs and alcohol is 'drugs'. At least opium is pretty natural, if that's a concern).

I don't go to the Dr over everything (I treated scarlet fever at home, etc), but I would make an appt if your kid is really miserable. It's good to get relief if it gets bad. I may not love Big Pharm, but sometimes they can be useful.
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#8 of 33 Old 01-26-2007, 11:29 PM
 
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How about telling him to "stop coughing"? No, seriously. Check out this link for more information:
http://breathspakids.blogspot.com/20...al-advice.html

Personally, I put all interventions, whether pharmaceutical, herbal, or alcohol, in the same category. The available information should be evaluated based on the known risks, benefits, and the value of the source of the information. Most herbals don't have enough information available. Some pharmaceuticals have enough information, but the benefit analysis is obviously not in favor of the medicaion. Even the FDA doesn't want kids taking cough remedies because they don't work. Mucinex is not in this category, BTW.

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#9 of 33 Old 01-26-2007, 11:46 PM
 
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The brand "Herbs For Kids" has a herbal mix for dry coughs, I've given it to ds1 with good results.
Although if my ds1 (dd doesn't get bad coughs) is coughing so bad at night it keeps him awake I give him otc cough syrup and they do work. This rarely happens so I don't sweat giving him the cough syrup. During the day I do other things to boost his immune system and help him get rid of the cough.

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#10 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 12:54 AM
 
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Guafenesin is the active drug in some OTC cough suppressants, & it does have *some* effectiveness, the only difference with Mucinex (to my knowledge) is that it's time release.

Unfortunately anything bad enough I'd bother medicating for is beyond its effectiveness capabilities, ymmv. But if it's not so bad you want to catch anything worse at the doctor's office getting prescription codeine, I'd try it.

('Stop coughing'? I gotta look that up. Thanks for the link.)
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#11 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 01:01 AM
 
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'Unless a child has a chest infection or an unusually productive cough, the most important advice for a child is to "Stop coughing"; standard communication advice indicates that "Stop coughing" is preferable to "Don't cough".

"on average, preschool children have 9 colds a year; those in kindergarten, 12 colds a year; and adolescents and adults, 7 colds per year". If your child has other symptoms, or the cough is persistent, consult a doctor.

Oh, ok, they're talking colds. Yeah, sure. I'm talking bronchitis & pneumonia (that chlamydial pneumonia left me thrashed, and we had it for months. Ugly.)

Drowning in phlegm is not an option I'd choose to pursue.

(Dayam the average kid has a lot of colds! Until this flu, we were actually well since October! I should've known it was too good to last.)

Don't forget (reasonably) hot teas, Phathui. My littles don't like most tea but will drink unsweetened rooibos. It really helps.
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#12 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 01:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Apricot View Post
How about telling him to "stop coughing"? No, seriously. Check out this link for more information:
http://breathspakids.blogspot.com/20...al-advice.html

Personally, I put all interventions, whether pharmaceutical, herbal, or alcohol, in the same category. The available information should be evaluated based on the known risks, benefits, and the value of the source of the information. Most herbals don't have enough information available. Some pharmaceuticals have enough information, but the benefit analysis is obviously not in favor of the medicaion. Even the FDA doesn't want kids taking cough remedies because they don't work. Mucinex is not in this category, BTW.
We have tried "Don't cough," "Shut up so I can sleep," "Stop coughing, you're only going to cough more if you do that," and "You're driving me crazy."

Do you have a reference or link for the FDA statement? (Though I totally see that, they aren't working here)

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#13 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 01:24 AM
 
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This is probably no help, but I remember seeing that in the news recently too.

(Did you try, "PLEASE, for the love of God, STOP COUGHING." yet? )

Poor Phathui. Poor Phathui's boy. Try to get some rest (& invest in an electric kettle, if I had to stagger to the kitchen everytime I needed a hot cuppa tea I'd just lie down & cough myself to death.)
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#14 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 01:30 AM
 
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I'll find the link to the statement in a sec. My husband (he-who-is-always-sicker-than-I-with-the-same-cold) was going nuts coughing. I told him to STOP COUGHING dammit when he asked for medicinal advice. When he said that wasn't helpful, I told him that it was recommended advice from a pulmonary specialist and read him the article. He soon stopped coughing so much, although he doesn't admit using the advice.

Quote:
Cough and Cold Medications in Children Less Than Two Years of Age

Audience: Pediatric and primary care healthcare professionals and patients
[Posted 01/12/2007] The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) article describing three deaths in U.S. infants aged less than 12 months associated with cough and cold medications. These medications were determined by medical examiners or coroners to be the underlying cause of death. The cases described in this report underscore the need for clinicians to use caution when prescribing and caregivers to use caution when administering cough and cold medications to children aged less than 2 years.

[January 12, 2007- MMWR Weekly - CDC]

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#15 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 01:32 AM
 
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http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/550851

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#16 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 02:05 AM
 
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for coughs, i like Boiron's homeopathic cough syrup "Stodal"--it is for dry or productive coughs. it is honey-based, so that helps too. i don't like to medicate with allopathic drugs, and only limited herbs, but homeopathic stuff is great because it doesn't have side effects, and it doesn't suppress symptoms, but it helps the body reach equilibrium and stimulates it to heal itself. the "Drossera" that Gitti mentioned is homeopathic also, so you needn't worry about nasty side effects or suppression of symptoms. it works quite well.

for homeopathic stuff, the main thing is making sure you have the right remedy--the remedies are very symptom-specific. abchomeopathy.com has a great online remedy finder.

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#17 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 02:28 AM
 
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We used up a bottle of the Boiron homeopathic honey syrup on that awful pneumonia. Didn't do crap.

I'm all for trying alternatives, but this stuff gets expensive & I'm just putting my own experience out there (I do still buy some homeopathic products, I'm just skeptical & choosy ). It tasted good, though .
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#18 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 02:51 AM
 
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If it's a dry cough guaifenesin won't do a damn thing for it, unfortunately. It works very well IME for coughs caused by sinus discharge or bronchitis, though.
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#19 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 12:25 PM
 
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I JUST read in my Dr. s office magasine yesterday that studies have found that dark chocolate works very well to stop coughs. I wish I could remember more. Sorry. But they suggested 1-2 squares of very dark chocolate. (Oh, it also said this is a very old Jamaican cough remedy)
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#20 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 12:37 PM
 
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I'm leaving the Stop Coughing link up for dh who has been making himself miserable with coughing all week. Now I'm off to tell ds to stop coughing as well.

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#21 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 01:12 PM
 
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When DS had bronchitis we had good luck with otc cough syrup. However the NP did recommend Mucinex as well. If his coughing sounds like a seal's bark, then it might be bronchitis and you may want to get him into the dr for it.

K.
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#22 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 03:17 PM
 
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I do think that mucinex is a better therapy than the "drying" medications often found in "combo" cold and flu products. Drying the snot up into concrete in the broncial tubes and sinuses is not helpful to those prone to infections or those with asthma that already have trouble getting the bronchials to clear out.

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#23 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 03:24 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Apricot View Post
I do think that mucinex is a better therapy than the "drying" medications often found in "combo" cold and flu products. Drying the snot up into concrete in the broncial tubes and sinuses is not helpful to those prone to infections or those with asthma that already have trouble getting the bronchials to clear out.

Yep. We all stay away from Benedryl etc. when we are sick or it's a sure thing that someone is going to come down with bronchitis or an ear infection. Gotta keep those fluids and gunk loose and get them out. The drying meds turn them into glue-like stuff that is a breeding ground for bacteria.

I've had some relief with a cherry bark tincture. It works really well for dry coughs or scratchy throats.

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#24 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 03:30 PM
 
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Oh yeah, lots of fluids. I read a really cool website from a sinus doc a while ago. He talks about how sinuses and other hollow places in the body, like the vagina, don't get any blood flow to the interior space. The only way to get good things like white blood cells or antibiotics from the blood stream to the space is through secretions, so drinking lots and lots of water is actually an inportant part of the therapy - even if you're to the point of taking antibiotics.
My coworker and friend had such bad headaches he had to leave work and couldn't come back for days. His docs though he might have a brain tumor, but no, he just had a walled off infection in his sinuses. He had to have invasive therapy to get it to heal. He's become an evangelical for drinking water.

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#25 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 03:47 PM
 
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TigerTail - seriously, try the Loquat syrup. My ds used to have (I'm being optimistic - he's getting so much stronger) serious issues with coughing - he was hospitalized once for bad pneumonia. I haven't found anything better than the Loquat syrup. It has all these herbal - natural ingredients. It doesn't make the cough stop, but it helps tremendously and instead of masking symptoms for a while - it helps the body heal from them. That stuff is awesome. I had to go downtown to buy some, and I was expecting to pay an outrageous amount for it. I couldn't believe it - it was cheap, too.
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#26 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 03:51 PM
 
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ColoradoMoma, talking about syrup reminded me of another remedy - sugar cubes. Sugar, real sugar, can stop coughs. Butterscotch drops, or a sucker, or sugar cubes are proven to offer some cough relief. For most kids, that wouldn't have many side effects, and it's cheap. You could even have fun making candy today.

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#27 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 04:23 PM
 
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A recently discovered remedy in our household for my son's cough. (He will cough nonstop for an hour )

Take some leaves from a Guava tree and boil it in some water with grated ginger (to taste). Strain, add honey to water, and drink. It's yummy and it REALLY worked when nothing else had. It usually lasts for about 8 hours.

http://www.rain-tree.com/guava.htm

http://www.drugs.com/npp/guava.html

http://www.stuartxchange.org/Bayabas.html

http://www.jpsfc.com/kaisi-jsfc/PDF/8/8-1-2.pdf
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#28 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 05:04 PM
 
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I don't have a Chinese herbalist nearby (I might be able to find it at the Int mkt, I'll see if my dd will look for it); but what's the list of stuff in it? I mean, is it the loquat fruit itself that's the magic ingredient? Or some other herbs & the loquat is just the tasty syrup? (In case we can find a tea with whatever herbs & not the syrup.)

I miss my loquat trees.
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#29 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 05:13 PM
 
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Since my coughs tend to be of the "get the gunk out of the tubes" variety, I've found Musinex (which is plain guaifenisin in adult dosages) to be very useful. You must must must drink plenty of water and other fluids for it to really work though. If I've got a dry cough, I don't bother with it. And no, just drinking lots of water does not do the same job as the Musinex and water. I wish it did.

Guaifenesin is not a cough suppressent. If one of us needs to cough, the last thing we want is to suppress said cough. OTOH, when a cough is keeping Mom or anyone from sleeping at all, I can see the wisdom of a suppressant med in the evening.

Other ways I've treated a coughing child: run the shower with just hot water (the pure humidity has a loosening effect on the gunk, and a moistening effect on dry passages); sitting outside in cold weather wrapped well in coats and blankets(the cold air has a loosening effect on the excess mucous). Lots of fluids helps too.

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#30 of 33 Old 01-27-2007, 06:59 PM
 
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Doh! It's an expectorant of course, that's what I meant (exhaustion & illness).
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