When allergies combine to aggravate symptoms or come and go with the seasons, it can take years to figure out the triggers, but as they say, better late than never. My own experience has been that pet dander annoys me more in winter and that apples and carrots only give me that scratchy feeling in my throat when poplar or birch tree pollen is in the air. Since my symptoms and those of the boys seemed random, it's no wonder that doctors and even my husband were perplexed and at times skeptical. One doctor prescribed an asthma inhaler for our older child, but the medication was no more effective than a lozenge at stopping the coughs.
So what can you do if you suspect that allergies are at the root of a persistently annoying cough? It doesn't hurt to ask your doctor about it as testing for allergies is improving in range and effectiveness. If it takes months for you to get an appointment with a specialist, don't despair. Try to establish a cause and effect relationship between symptoms and exposure to common allergens. Once you have a suspect, remove it from your environment and see if symptoms disappear.
If symptoms keep coming back with repeated exposure then you have scientific confirmation of your suspicions. Of course I don't recommend this for serious or in any way life-threatening allergies.
Meanwhile, to cope with the coughs you may give your child what one specialist recommended for children over one year of age: a bit of honey. Turns out that the sweet stuff thins mucus and reduces inflammation in the throat.
Yeah, for some things grandma's advice was right on target.