Most coughs are caused by cold or flu and clear up within three weeks.
But the symptoms of a chesty cough are slightly different from a dry or tickly cough – your chest feels heavy and you may cough up mucus or phlegm.
There are a range of cough medicines available on the market, many that claim to help sooth the symptoms of different types of coughs.
But what’s the best way to get rid of a chesty cough?
Dr Andrew Thornber, chief medical officer at the Now Healthcare Group, has recommended the best way to cure this type of cough – and it involves hot water and one other ingredient.
He said: “Hot water and honey is usually as good a remedy as most over the counter cough medicines.”
But Dr Thornber added that, if you can, chat your pharmacist to talk about your symptoms and find one suitable for you.
What if you’ve got a mucus cough?
Dr Thornber said: “There’s little evidence to show chesty cough medicines work, but your pharmacist is ideally placed to chat about your symptoms and they can also advise on decongestant treatments to help.
“A good tip is to drink lots of water to loosen the mucus, which makes it easier to cough up.
“Also, use a humidifier or inhale steam from a bowl to help clear the chest.
“Painkillers can also bring down a fever and ease any associated headaches.”
And a dry cough?
Dr Thornber said: “A dry tickly cough can be very irritating. Cough syrups and lozenges can help but won’t get rid of the cough.
The NHS suggests the best way to get rid of a cough.
It says: “You should rest, drink plenty of fluids and drink hot lemon with honey (not suitable for babies).”