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Coughing is a natural reflex to quickly get rid of germs, harmful or foreign substances in the airways. A severe irritable cough can develop into an acute asthma attack.
The inflammation of upper airways in the lungs, the bronchial tubes, is called bronchitis. Acute bronchitis is very common as it often develops from a cold or other respiratory infection. An acute bronchitis cough usually lasts for 10 days, sometimes up to 3 weeks. In the beginning, cough is the first symptom. This cough will be dry at first, then becomes productive, meaning you will cough out mucus because bronchitis causes the accumulation of mucus in the airways. Other symptoms are shortness of breath and low fever.
The disease is seen in cough and acute bronchitis, which is called Exogenous Cough in Chinese medicine. The reason is that the External Wind, Cold, Dampness, Dryness or Fire Evil invade the Lung system, resulting in obstruction of Lung Qi and the reverse of the Lung Qi leads to cough and sputum. Due to different body constitution and different nature of External Evil, it can be manifested as different symptoms such as Wind-Cold or Wind-Heat.
At a later stage, when phlegm turns yellow:
Clear Lung Heat