Cough has always been a problem for its sufferer, especially during this period when respiratory issues are rampant. Nothing is exciting about cough, especially at night; it can be pretty upsetting and sleep-deprived. In this article, we comprehensively answered frequently asked questions about using a humidifier for cough and finally reviewed the best humidifier for coughs.

The Best Humidifier for Coughs – Unbiased Reviews

Coughing affects both adults and babies. It can lead to other severe conditions like asthma, allergy, dizziness, neoplasm, etc. The reason why it should be taken seriously with medical consultation.

Nevertheless, you must know that cough is not a disease  but rather a means by which the body reacts to the irritation of the foreign bodies on the tracheobronchial tracts.

In most cases, a cold always leads to a cough when the airways are sensitive. Cold air, with or without dust, will trigger the cough. This results from the body’s response to clear up the virus causing flu or cold.

Also Read: Best humidifier for nosebleeds

What does a humidifier do for a cough?

Humidifiers are very active in relieving people of so many ailments and discomfort. With the flu season approaching, a humidifier can be your best bet for staying healthy. This invaluable unit is very productive when it comes to relieving coughs. Explained below are what a humidifier will do for a cough.

  • Stopping the spread of flu germs

A recent study has successfully shown the relationship between flu and humidity. It was ascertained that germs are active and would survive in dry air compared to a humid environment. Since this microorganism can be transmitted easily from one person to the other, getting a humidifier and staying on top of the humidity would be advisable.

  • Help breathe gently and comfortably and Humidify painful dry throat

In most cases, cough and its complications often arise from the tightness and dryness of the respiratory tract. Warm mist humidifiers are known for dispersing soothing moderate warm mist to release every tightness and moisturize air passage.

  • Helps you sleep better

People tormented by coughing during the night can testify to the non-sleep battle. Cool mist humidifier often goes a long way to help you sleep better without even snoring.

Also Read: Best Humifier for bronchitis

Top 5 Best Humidifiers for Coughs

1)    Levoit warm or cool mist ultrasonic humidifier

Special Features: Digital Humidity display, Whisper quiet, 6L water tank, aromatherapy, and touch/remote control

Best Humidifies to help with cough problems for babies and adults
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This is a highly recommended humidifier for a cough that comes with PTC heating system, which can heat the water to a warm temperature for a regular warm mist setting. This helps in purifying water and dispersing the purest mist. Without the warm mist settings, the cool mist can increase the humidity of a room by 25%.

The level unit comes with a digital display screen that is touchable or controlled with a remote. This feature makes it very easy to use. It is also easy to clean and has a big water tank of 1.5 gallons or 6 liters that can continually disperse 500ml of water per hr. The lowest mist level settings have a mist duration of 36 hours.

Also admirable about this unit is the whisper-quiet feature that allows it to be compatible with baby use. The operation of this unit can be set to auto mode to adjust itself to the room’s humidity level automatically. This makes it safe to avoid a damp place. Besides, it allows for the addition of essential oil via the aroma box.

Nevertheless, the product material is highly durable because it is made of ABS plastic that is hard to break. Cleaning and refilling of this product are effortless as well. One thing that makes it distinct from the other humidifier is the special leak-proof that prevents leaking.


  • Big tank capacity
  • Essential oil compatibility
  • Ease of clean and refill
  • Very quiet
  • Durable
  • Automatic setting
  • Budget friendly


  • Might leak if you add essential oil into the water
  • Might mis-read the humidity level of a room

2)  Elechomes UC5501 Ultrasonic Warm and cool humidifiers

Special Features: Dual mist, Auto humidity sensing, 750sqft coverage, 6L tank, Ultra quiet, and sleep mode.

humidifier for colds and cough
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The Elechomes have a shape that resembles the Levoit. It would be hard to differentiate the two if not for the color and some certain distinguishing features. But Elechomes is different because it has a more expensive safety shutoff and has optional water filtration to prevent limescale buildup over time.

This product is worth the price in all functionality. It has a 360-degree dual nozzle for a double release of warm and cold mist at a time. Unlike the level, Elechomes has 40 hours of mist timing of continuous use on the lowest settings at a 550ml/hr max humidity frequency.

It is straightforward to use this unit and refill it. One of its intriguing features is the auto mode settings that allow you to leave the humidifier working independently. The unit also comes with an intelligent humidity sensor that automatically detects the humidity of a room and then displays it for you to see the humidity level of the room and then set your desired humidification rate. The touch screen and the remote compatibility also characterize the ease of use.

Apart from being automatically oriented, it is ultra-quiet compared to any other humidifier. It operates at a sound level of 34 dB. This is the basis of its new, improved sleep mode, which ensures it doesn’t affect your sleep with sound and auto shuts off when the set humidification is reached.

Another reason it’s worth the money is the ability to work as an essential oil diffuser. It has space for you to add essential oil for aromatherapy.


  • A large area of coverage
  • Aromatherapy
  • High mist timing
  • Ultra Quiet
  • Automatic mode
  • Safe turn off feature


  • Expensive

3)    Everlasting comfort Ultrasonic cool mist humidifier

Special Features: Auto shut off, no filter needed, essential oil compatible, and essential oil tray

cough humidifier: humidifiers for big rooms and bedrooms
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This is also one of the best humidifiers that would work perfectly in clearing cough. The name everlasting results from its long-term nonstop misting time of 50 hrs. It also has a 6L tank that releases mist through the nozzle at 270ml/hr. Frequency. This humidifier can effectively cover a space of 400 sqft and increase the whole room’s humidity.

The unique feature of this everlasting product is filter-less humidification. This is very cost-saving and hassle-free, so you won’t always have to look for a way to replace the old filter. In most cases, regular humidifiers cannot be used with just any water, but this unit can even boast of using Tap water to mist a room. It is only advisable to use distilled water to prevent white mineral deposits.

It’s one of the most reliable humidifiers when it comes to safety. It comes with a safety shut-off, enabling it to turn off itself whenever it detects that water is finished in the tank. It also comes with an essential oil tray that allows you to use it with your essential oil.


  • A high output of mist
  • Longer duration of mist timing
  • Aromatherapy
  • Large water tank
  • Auto shut off


  • Not easy to clean and refill
  • Has lower dispersing frequency when compared to other humidifiers

4)    Levoit cool mist Ultrasonic humidifier

Special Features: whisper quiet, aromatherapy, adjustable mist settings, easy to refill, Moderate tank capacity

humidifier for cough
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Like the above awesome cough humidifier, this Levoit is excellent and worth the price. It has a  stylish design with a one-button push start and use. This makes it one of the easiest-to-use and easy-to-clean humidifiers for cough.

This unit has a triple mist dispersal level of settings. It gives out a mist output of about 250ml/hr, making it an average production for an entire room. The operation of this device is hushed due to the ultrasonic feature. It gives off mist for about 36 hours without stoppingon a low mist setting.

Also, it comes with an aroma box, just like every other product on this list. A fan inside the unit blows the aroma into the mist to give a pure and scented fragrance that is soothing to the throat. However, avoiding adding oil directly into the water is essentialto prevent water leakage later.


  • Moderate water tank
  • Easy to clean and refill
  • Compatible with essential oil
  • Triple settings of mist
  • Whisper quiet
  • Budget-friendly


  • Very prone to water leakage

5)    Vicks Mini filter cool mist ultrasonic humidifier

Special Features: Filterless, 20hrs misting time, quiet, 0.5-gallon tank and Recommended by American Academy of Pediatrics.

humidifier for cough
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This baby-friendly humidifier for cough is one of the most common humidifiers in the market. This portable humidifier is considered one of the best humidifiers for children who cough in the nursery because it has a very quiet auto shut-off. This enables the device to switch off itself when the water tank is empty instead of overworking.

The humidifier can boast a long misting duration of 20 hrs with a medium-sized tank of a 4L water tank. The most distinctive feature of this unit is that you don’t need to replace the filter, just like every other humidifier. This saves cost and stress. It is, however, easy to clean and refill because of its sturdy handle and wide opening. In most cases, you wouldn’t need to fill it more than once daily.

The humidifier has been noted for its ability to make you sleep easily at night due to its ability to relieve cough and nasal congestion. I got my hand on this unit for testing purposes from an influencer, and all I can say is awesome because it serves the function that the biggest humidifier wouldn’t give. I recommend using it in a 10 X10 room because it wasn’t active when I tested it in an 18 X 26.


  • Ease of use
  • No need for filter
  • Very quiet
  • Recommended for Nursery


  • Not compatible with essential oil

What type of cough do I have?

You might have been asking yourself, ‘what type of cough do I have.’ it’s good to know the specific cough type you are battling with, to understand how to treat it.

In a broad classification, your cough type can be either dry, wet, paroxysmal, or croup cough. To be more specific about the timing of coughs and types, we have

Wet Coughing at Night

As the name implies, it is always a wet cough, which means it has to do so much with producing watery mucus. The wet cough is the body’s response to push out excess mucus from the respiratory tract. It is either caused by a cold or flu.

A wet cough can either be an acute wet cough or a chronic wet cough. The chronic has a longer duration of stay than the severe. People suffering from this cough to a minimal level can make some sounds when coughing, especially while the mouth is open while coughing.

Henceforth, you will know that you have a wet cough when mucus or phlegm tends to flow into your mouth whenever you are coughing. Although this kind of cough also show up during the day after some trigger, but this cough is prevalent during the Night and can be involuntary and uncontrollable

Dry cough at end of cold / Dry cough at night time

Unlike wet cough, Dry cough doesn’t have any mucus to eject out of the respiratory system. In essence, dry cough often triggers a cough reflex at the end of the throat. Sometimes, it may also be due to inflammation of the wall of the respiratory tract (bronchi, throat, and larnx).

In most cases, it often comes with a mild to severe pain because of the dryness, caused mainly by upper respiratory infections. However, a dry cough can extend for a long week with a sound. Other possible causes of dry cough are sore throat, laryngitis, allergies, asthma, and several others.

You would know that you have a dry cough when the cough is Hacking with a background sound and it’s not bringing any mucus into your mouth. It also comes up at night time or after a trigger by a cold.

Paroxysmal Cough

This type of cough is a more complicated and life-threatening cough. It is also known as whooping cough or pertussis. It often comes along with vomiting and struggling to breathe.

People struggling with this often make a whooping sound due to forceful inhalation to regain lost lung oxygen during coughing.

This type of cough often leads to serious complications in babies and may lead to death if not adequately treated. The best way to avoid this cough in babies is to get them vaccinated. Paroxysmal cough can be identified by a whooping sound and struggling to breathe.

Croup cough in kids and adults

This viral infection cough is common in children 1-5 years of age. It is caused by swollen airways making it further narrower for the passage of air. This cough is characterized by a barky cough with a raspy voice because of the swelling around the voice box

During inhalation, children suffering from croup cough often make sounds because of difficulties with breathing, but it doesn’t involve vomiting.

Also Read: Best humidifier for croup cough

How does a humidifier help a cough and a bronchitis?

Inhaled medicine has always been a very effective way of treating throat infections like cough and bronchitis. Different humidifiers have different ways of working, but all of them contribute immensely to the increment of the humidity level of a room.

When someone is coughing, it’s the body’s response to the irritation of the airways caused by dryness. A cool or warm mist will fill the space with enough moisture so that the person can inhale wet air into the respiratory tract to ease the tickling behind the throat.

The center for disease control and prevention suggests that humidifiers can soothe coughing by loosening the mucus, but there wasn’t clear enough evidence to support the use of either the cool mist or the warm mist.

Conclusively, dry air could cause coughing and can also be a bad combo with coughing. A humidifier will go a long way to help add moisture to the air. Warm mist humidifiers may help in soothing but endeavor to choose cool mist for babies because of burns.

Humidifier or Dehumidifier for cough

People often need clarification about which to go for when it comes to humidifiers vs. dehumidifiers for cough. Humidifier adds moisture to the air, whereas dehumidifier does the opposite. It is advisable to go for a humidifier because a dehumidifier will instead contribute more to the triggers of the cough.

When anyone has respiratory tract distress or congestion that could lead to any cough, the air quality that is inspired and expired would go a long way to determine your comfort level and how quickly the cough will be dealt with.

The key to picking a humidifier or dehumidifier for cough is to know when moisture needs to be added to the air or when humidity must be removed from the air and why. A humidifier is the right unit to pick when your symptoms are due to a cold or flu. Even until now, a dehumidifier has never been the best remedy for any coughing.

Also Read: Humidifier or dehumidifier for stuffy nose

Can a humidifier cause a cough?

Humidifiers help resolve cough issues but can worsen the cough if not used properly. There hasn’t been any report that a humidifier can cause a cough, but below is how a humidifier can exacerbate a cough.

  • Uncleaned Humidifier

Bacteria, Fungi, or other micro-organisms can grow inside the water tank when not properly cleaned. A portable humidifier should be disassembled and cleaned thoroughly. The water should be refilled daily, and all the parts in contact with the water must also be cleaned.

  • Using Tap water in a humidifier

Tap water is a hard mineralized water that encourages the growth of microorganisms and the dispersion of white particle dust into the air. There hasn’t been much confirmation and report of the effect of white dust on health except for the lung injury reported in an infant in February 2011 after inhaling mineral dust.

Factors to consider when choosing the best humidifier for coughs

Cool or warm mist humidifier for cough

The pick between either warm or cold mist for cough depends majorly on the season of use and the type of cough. The cool mist will be the best pick in the summer so that the warm mist will do fine in the winter.

In most cases, a warm mist humidifier can play the role of both because it often cools off and assumes the room’s temperature before inhaling. It is imperative to note that the warm mist is not an option for small kids and toddlers.

Humidification coverage

If the primary purpose of the humidification is the whole house, it will be good to go for the entire house humidifiers. But if it’s only for personal use, the portable humidifiers will do fine for a room.

Also Read: Best humidifier for single room

Water tank Capacity

This is important because of 2 things. If you don’t always want to refill your humidifier with water, you should opt for the bigger tanks. Secondly, don’t pick the smaller tank humidifiers if you wish a lot of mist could be dispersed into the air.

Misting Duration

Every humidifier has a mist time, which is the length of time that the humidifier is capable of dispersing mist into the air before running out of water in the tank. Make sure you choose a humidifier with at least 10 hrs. of misting time.

Noise level

Warm mist and evaporative humidifiers tend to make more noise than ultrasonic humidifiers. If you use your humidifier in the bedroom or where noise will be disturbing, it is best to get the cool mist ultrasonic humidifier.

Essential oil Usage compatibility

Since essential oil usage is now a trend, it would be good to bend to it. Some humidifiers have the function of using an essential oil, while others don’t. Henceforth, if you are considering adding the therapy of an essential oil diffuser, pick the product compatible with it because not all humidifiers go well with essential oil.

Ease of cleaning and refilling

Any product you buy must be easy to clean and refill with water. This is because there is a need to continually clean humidifiers meant to resolve cough issues, or they will worsen it.

Final Verdict: Best humidifier for cough at night and during the day

Levoit warm or cool mist ultrasonic humidifier is our best for some reasons. One of which is the budget-friendly consideration. You don’t have to break the bank before getting this excellent unit. It, however, provides the same fantastic function as the Elechomes , which cost a bit more. Also, Levoit stands out because of the dual mist that can go as long as 36 hours of misting. Its automated feature is part of the considerations as the best.

Elechomes warm or cool mist ultrasonic humidifier would have been the best, but the price put it behind Levoit. However, it has a broader coverage area and the most extended misting duration than any humidifier.

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