People with chest congestion often find relief with guaifenesin, an expectorant found in medications like Mucinex® and Robitussin®. Guaifenesin comes in tablet and syrup form, and is generally taken every 4 to 12 hours, depending on the particular product. Because it works by thinning bronchial secretions, it is not appropriate for people with a dry, hacking cough.
The tablet form of guaifenesin actually comes in two different varieties: immediate-release and extended-release. The extended-release tablets (Mucinex) should be swallowed whole and never chewed or crushed. The typical dose is 200 to 400 mg every 4 hours for immediate-release products and 600 to 1200 mg every 12 hours for extended-release products. Regardless of the form, no more than 2400 mg should be taken in a 24-hour period.
(Click Guaifenesin to learn more about both tablet and syrup forms of this medication, including possible side effects, when to consult a healthcare provider before taking it, and more.)