Pulled muscle from Coughing?

Pulled muscle is also known as strain, it refers to injury to a muscle that causes the muscle fibers to exceed their limit and tear. Muscle strains occur mostly in athletes. But pulled muscles can also occur when you cough. Coughing is a tiring activity which has an effect on our body muscles. When you cough, you strain muscles in your abdomen and chest; it can tear muscle fibers if it extends for a long time.

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There are a number of symptoms of pulled muscle from coughing which people experience. They include:

  • During coughing, an individual feels sharp pain at the place where the muscle strained. This makes the affected person to be uncomfortable. When a person has a muscle fiber tear, he/she feels pain which vary from mild to severe depending on the nature of tear. The pain gets worse when an individual flexes the muscles.
  • The area of the strain muscle is soft when touched and it can swell and become stiff. Severe injury to chest or abdomen muscles makes breathing difficult. The pain is more severe when these muscles contract. People who experience abdominal and chest muscle strains have difficulty to bend their bodies.

When to See a Health Professional

The normal time an individual is supposed to heal from muscle strain from coughing is 3-4 days. When you have a severe cough and symptoms of strained muscles last more than two weeks, you should seek your health professional for advice. In case you experience pain close to your chest, your ribs may be broken and you need urgent treatment.

Treating Pulled Muscle from Coughing

Strained muscles from coughing and its symptoms can be treated by a combination of medications and home remedies. The following are treatment options that can help relieve these symptoms:

Home remedies: There are various home remedies that you can use to lessen the symptoms of pulled muscles from coughing. These remedies are simple to use and they include:

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  • Protect your strained muscle: One way of accelerating healing from a pulled muscle is to limit movement in the affected area. Avoid lifting heavy materials since they may worsen the symptoms of the strained muscles. You also need to have enough rest so that the affected muscles have enough time to heal.
  • Use ice pack. Ice packs are effective in relieving pain and swelling on your body. In the case of a strained muscle, ice packs will lower swellings and relieve inflammation in the affected area. Apply the ice pack directly on the strained muscle from coughing for around 15 minutes and repeat after every two hours. Do not apply ice pack directly on the skin around the strained muscle. Use a cloth or a towel between the ice pack and the skin.
  • Use a bandage or a compression wrap: A bandage or a compression wrap helps stop swelling in the affected area. You can wrap the bandage around your chest when coughing has reduced. You can only wrap a bandage on the chest when your breathing is not difficult and you are comfortable.
  • Raise your strained muscle: It is recommended to raise your strained muscle above the heart. However, this may be difficult when the pulled muscle is in the abdomen. When this is the case, use a pillow to elevate your body. You may also try lying on the side that is opposite the pulled muscle.
  • Stay away from exercises, alcohol, massage and heat: When you have a strained muscle, avoid massage, alcohol, exercises and heat. This is because the aforementioned issues can worsen the injury to the pulled muscle. Exercising or running increases movement in the pulled muscle and you should avoid it. You can slowly apply heat, move the muscle and massage it when swellings and inflammation in the affected area has diminished.

Medications: When you have a cough that is persistent, you will have trouble preventing muscle movement. Therefore, medications that treat cough can be used along with remedies for strained muscles to properly manage pulled muscle from coughing. The following medications can be used:

  • Cough suppressant: Cough is relieved by taking cough suppressant drugs. Use this drug after consulting your health professional. Other drugs that your doctor can recommend for cough include cough expectorant. You may also try over the counter cough lozenge which can help lower irritation or tingling feeling in the throat which make you cough.
  • Painkiller: Pain relieving medications are useful in treating pulled muscle. Drugs such as ibuprofen can be used when the pain is too much to bear. However, take painkillers after consulting your doctor because some of these drugs can worsen the symptoms.

Pulled muscles from coughing usually takes 2 or 4 days to heal or improve. However when you notice no improvement or the condition is becoming worse after using the above remedies, seek medical attention.


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