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Parents will always worry when their little one starts coughing. However, what if your baby is fake coughing? Read on to find out what exactly this is all about.
Is Fake Coughing in Babies Normal?
Here’s a fact – babies pretend to cough or sneeze all the time. This is completely normal. This is one of the first ways that a baby tries to communicate. Your little one is not able to communicate with words just yet, so the next best option is to make noises like a cough or sneeze. Babies start to do this at when they are around six months old. Having said that, if your baby does not fake cough, there isn’t any reason why you should be alarmed. Some babies pretend to cough, while some babies pretend to sneeze. A few babies make gurgling noises or just cry. All of these are the different forms of communication that an infant uses.
Reasons Behind Baby’s Fake Coughing
There are a few reasons why babies fake a cough. Here are a few –
1. Baby Coughing for Attention
Most of the time, a baby pretends to cough only to get your attention. Babies are extremely smart. Your little munchkin must have figured out that when he or she coughs, you’re all ears, running to check on the baby. Once the baby has established that coughing gains your attention, there’s no stopping him.
2. Baby Coughing for Fun
Babies are playful. In fact, the first few years of a baby’s life is pretty much all play. Sometimes, babies cough just for fun. This shouldn’t be a surprise, because all that they do is a fun activity for them.
3. Blame it on the Salivary Glands
We all know just how much babies drool. This is because their salivary glands get active once they hit two months. Babies don’t really know what to do with all that saliva. Should they spit it? Should they swallow it? They have no clue. So they do the next best thing – they play with it. With the act of playing comes coughing.
4. Fascinated by the Sound
Babies can hear way before they are even born. They start to hear when the mother is at the twenty-fifth or twenty-sixth week of pregnancy. Sounds fascinate babies to no extent, which is why several toys for kids come with different noises. In fact, sounds play a huge roll in the development of your little one, because babies cannot see very clearly during the first few months after birth, so they depend a lot on their hearing. Sometimes, babies a fake cough simply because they are fascinated by the sound of a cough.
When is the Time to Stop Babies from Faking Cough?
In the first few stages when a baby starts to fake a cough, you get scared or worried. After you’ve realized that this is normal and that you’re little baby is faking a cough and being a naughty brat, you’ll find this cute. However, there’s only so much fake coughing a parent can take. Also, over time, when your baby gets older, it is important to get over this. You can start by telling your baby to stop this habit by making him or her understand that it has to stop. Talk to your child, tell him that faking a cough is not the way to communicate.
How to Differentiate a Real Cough from a Fake Cough in Babies?
Now you know that babies, in fact, do fake a cough. But what if your little one is not a boy crying wolf but is really in distress? Here’s how you find out if your infant coughing and gagging is for real and not just a playful tactic to communicate.
- Check your baby’s temperature. Does your baby have a fever? He is probably sick and needs to visit the doctor.
- Does your child have a running nose? If yes, then that is probably an indication that your child has a cold. Most of the time a cold is accompanied by a cough.
- Another reason why your baby could be coughing is if he or she has a respiratory illness. If your child shows signs of difficulty in breathing, then take him or her to the doctor.
- If your child has trouble falling asleep, bowel movements, and refuses to eat, and all of this is accompanied by coughing, then your baby is probably ill.
While an infant fake cough is normal, it is always better to be on the safer side, so consult your doctor to make sure that your baby is out of danger.