Barbara Roberts, Homeopath

The Cough Clock

Sometimes you get a cough that you can set a clock by. This week my middle child has had a 5am cough. The first day I struggled and didn’t find the right remedy in time to get her back to sleep. The second day, when I realised it was again bang on 5am I checked my repertory and found 11 remedies listed. Being 5am and needing more sleep myself I narrowed it down to two more common ones, Kali Carbonicum and Nux Vomica. I gave her a dose at 5am, another 5 minutes later and a third when she coughed again 10 minutes after that. And that was the end of the cough, unlike the previous days hour and a half of coughing. We all got a bit more sleep that morning. That night I gave her a dose of each before bed, and the following morning she slept til her normal wake up time (between 6.30-7) and then coughed just a couple of times.

If you or your child has a cough that hits at a specific time, then this time may help you narrow down a remedy to clear it.

Below is a 24 hour clock of remedies. I have not listed every remedy, these ones are either more strongly associated with a cough at that time and/or you are more likely to have them on hand in your home kit.
This does not mean that you cannot use another well indicated remedy. If Belladonna fits the night time coughing symptoms better but it’s 2am, use it. If you don’t have the one listed at that time but you have another remedy that’s been working, use it. If the remedy hasn’t reduced or stopped the coughing in 3 doses then it’s probably not correct.

5am- Kali carbonicum, Nux Vomica, Lachesis
5.30am – Arsenicum Album
6am – Kali carb, coccus cacti,
7am – Coccus cacti
8am – Silica
9am- Natrum Muriaticum, Sepia
10am – Natrum Muriaticum
11am – Rhus Tox, Veratrum Album
Noon- Argentum Nitricum, Silica
1pm – Kali bichromicum, Hepar Sulph, Arsenicum album
2pm – Coccus cacti, Arsenicum Iodatum
3pm- Hepar Sulph, Phosphorus
4pm – Sepia, Kali bichromicum, Lachesis
5pm- Natrum Muriaticum
6pm – Natrum Muriaticum
7pm – Bryonia, Natrum Muriaticum, Phosphorus
8pm – Natrum Muriaticum, Sepia
9pm – Kali Carbonicum, Silica
10pm – Antimonium tartaricum, Belladonna
11pm – Antimonium tartaricum, Belladonna, Lachesis
Midnight – Belladonna, Lachesis, Nux Vomica
1am – Arsenicum Album, coccus cacti
2am – Arsenicum Album, Kali bichromicum, Kali carbonicum,
3am – Antimonium tartaricum, Arsenicum Album, Kali carbonicum, sepia
4am – Antimonium tartaricum, Kali carbonicum

Antimonium Tartaricum – rattling of mucus in the chest when breathing, chesty cough.

Argentinian Nitricum – chronic hoarseness and suffocating cough. May come on from anticipatory anxiety, or lose voice.

Arsenicum Album – wheezy, with constricted air passages and an asthma like cough. Chilly and sensitive to cold. May be anxious.

Arsenicum iodatum – similar time Arsenicum Album only hot and restless

Belladonna – dry cough from a red, dry throat. Tickle and then a spasmodic cough that will not stop until they have produced a little mucus.

Bryonia – hard dry cough with a sore chest, may be so painful they need to hold chest or press hand to sternum. Worse from movement, wants to be alone. Thirsty.

Coccus Cacti – constricted chest, dry, hacking cough. Throat feels rough and hoarse.

Hepar Sulph – productive, chesty cough with yellow phlegm. May have a sore throat with a stick sensation. Worse for cold drafts.

Kali Bichromicum – cough with very stringy, white mucus that may be hard to cough up.

Kali Carbonicum – dry, asthmatic sounding cough. May have pain in the chest.

Lachesis – worse after sleep, throat is very sensitive to touch. Dry, hacking cough with feeling of suffocation.

Natrum Muriaticum – tickling, dry cough.

Nux Vomica – dry, teasing cough, may have a post nasal drip and tickle in the throat causing the cough. The cough may cause a headache, or they may cough spasmodically until they reach.

Phosphorus – dry tickling cough from irritation in larynx. Worse for talking, laughing or eating, once they start coughing they cannot stop. Thirsty for ice cold water, worse in the open air or going from a warm room into a cold one.

Rhus Tox- dry trading cough. Worse in cold, wet weather and worse uncovering. Very restless.

Sepia – violent cough with fetching and gagging, and thick yellow phlegm. They are tired and indifferent and want family to go away.

Silica – cough and sore throat. Phlegm when coughed out smells offensive.

Veratrum Album – rattling in chest, hollow cough with tickling far down. Cough comes on from drinking cold water.

Of course there are many other things to look at with coughs, and the time of aggravation may or may not help. But next time you are up dealing with coughing in the middle of the night, look at the cough!
If you need help to find an appropriate remedy contact me for an acute consultation.

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