Having a persistent or dry cough can be frustrating and annoying.
In a silent room, coughs can echo and disrupt a lecture or presentation. In a restaurant, coughs can cause other diners to fling themselves all over their food in an attempt to protect it from contamination. And on a plane, coughs can disturb other passengers who are trying to sleep or enjoy the flight.
Dry and productive coughs are two distinct types of coughs.
A productive or healthy cough is one where you are coughing up phlegm or mucus. Your body needs to get rid of the muck that is in your lungs, therefore suppressing it isn’t a good idea. Some of these treatments or remedies will help to loosen mucus and make it easier for the body to expel.
Another scenario is that of a dry, hacking cough. This is one we’d want to put an end to. This dry cough often can be caused by allergies, very dry air, a cold’s after effects, or as simple as just being in a dusty environment…
Instead of going to the pharmacy for every little ailment, why not try some natural solutions? They’re not just healthier for you, but they taste way better too!
1. One Spoonful of Honey
Honey is a sticky, gooey substance that does an incredible job calming coughs. In fact, it may even work better than over-the-counter drugs!
The reason? Bees add this special enzyme to their harvested honeys so they have antibacterial properties too, which helps you get rid of your illness faster because there are no harmful side effects.
Honey is excellent for kids and adults as well, however, honey shouldn’t be given to children under 2.
Needed: 1 tablespoon of honey
1 tablespoon of honey should be taken 1-3 times per day to help you to control the coughing. If you’re having trouble sleeping because of a cough, take it just before going to bed. For children though, the dosage can be adjusted from one teaspoon up to one tablespoon.
2. Salted water gargle
Gargling salt water is a great way to reduce inflammation in the throat and kill bacteria. It can also ease the discomfort which is caused by coughing.
When the salt concentration outside of your mucous membranes is greater, water flows out of the cells to balance things out. Swelling decreases when water is lost from the cells, and with that happening the pain goes down too. If you have a persistent cough that is accompanied by inflamed tissue, this is an excellent approach to go.
Needed: 8 ounces of warm water and 1 teaspoon of salt
To make a saltwater solution, stir the salt in enough clean water until the salt is dissolved. Gargle the salted water for 15 seconds and spit out all of those gross microbes. Repeat this 2 or 3 times with the remaining water. Rinse the mouth with fresh H2O after finishing the gargling process.
Thyme is a plant that belongs to the mint family, and its leaves have been used for medicinal purposes for centuries. When brewed into a tea, thyme can help to loosen mucus and clear congestion. It can also act as an expectorant, helping to expel phlegm from the lungs. Additionally, thyme tea can help to soothe a sore throat and calm coughing fits. For best results, thyme tea should be brewed with fresh leaves and drunk several times per day.
Needed: 8 ounces of fresh water, a handful of fresh thyme, (honey or lemon optional)
Place the thyme in a mug and cover it with hot water. Wait for around 10 minutes and after that, it is good to add some lemon or honey. Drink it to the bottom, and drink 2-3 times daily, especially before going to bed.
4. Tea from Licorice Root
Licorice root is a versatile herb that has a wide range of benefits. It may be used to loosen mucus and inflammation, as well as reduce congestion. The main active ingredient in licorice root is glycyrrhizin. This ingredient and its effect is the main reason for slowing the conversion of cortisol to cortisone, increasing the effect of cortisol, and reducing inflammation. While licorice root can be an effective remedy for respiratory problems, it should be used with caution by those who are taking steroids or have kidney problems.
Needed: 8 ounces of fresh water and 2 tablespoons of dry licorice root
Fill a teapot with water and bring to a boil. Place the licorice root in a cup, then add enough water to cover and steep for 10-15 minutes. Drink 1 cup twice daily after straining out the pieces.
5. Mint & ginger syrup
Mint & ginger syrup is a refreshing and delicious way to soothe a cough. The mint helps to cool and refresh the throat, the ginger aids in the removal of mucus and phlegm from the lungs while also acting as an expectorant to loosen and discharge mucous from the airways. This synergistic combination is also effective in stopping the tickle at the back of the throat that can trigger a cough. Mint & ginger syrup is an excellent way to keep your throat healthy and free from irritation.
Needed: 4 cups of water, dried mint, around 3 tablespoons of fresh ginger, a cup of organic honey
Add the ginger and mint to 4 cups of water. Bring to a boil and then let it simmer at low heat. Simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the liquid has been reduced by half. Strain once cooked. After cooling a little, add and stir 1 cup of honey and stir until the honey dissolves.
Put and store the syrup in a bottle and you should take one spoon every few hours during the day to ease your cough. You can refrigerate it for up to three weeks.
6. Steam, steam, and more steam!
There is something about steam that just feels good. Maybe it is the heat, or maybe it is the fact that it seems to help almost immediately with whatever ailment you are dealing with. Steam is your powerful ally when it comes to a cough, cold, or stuffiness. The steam quite literally loosens mucous and phlegm, making it easier to expel.
In addition, you can add numerous essential oils to the steam, which will provide additional benefits. For example, eucalyptus oil can help to clear sinuses, while peppermint oil can help to ease a cough. Ultimately, steam is a simple and effective way to find relief from a cold or congestion.
Needed: a bowl of water, a clean towel, 3 drops of tea tree oil, and 1 or 2 drops of eucalyptus oil
In a bowl that is resistant to heat, we need to put enough boiled water, so that the container is half full. Allow the water to cool slightly, about 60 seconds, and add the essential oils, stirring quickly to release the vapors. Keep in mind that steam can severely scorch your skin! Cover your head with the towel, creating a tent over your face, and breathe deeply. The session should last 5-10 minutes. Repeat this 2-3 times per day.
7. Pepper and Honey
Black pepper is a spice that is used in cooking and can also be used as a remedy for coughs. Black pepper can make you cough or tickle your nose if you’re too close to it when it’s being ground. It’s not always enjoyable, but it helps a lot in removing the mucus and mucus that blocks the lungs. Honey provides antibacterial qualities and removes the sharpness from the pepper.
As shown below, with these two products, you can add one more syrup to your life, which will be an excellent ally in the fight with the coughing. Use freshly ground black pepper if possible, as previously ground pepper loses some of its flavors.
Needed: 8 ounces of fresh water, 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, 1 tablespoon of honey
Put the pepper and honey in a mug. Cover them with hot, almost boiling water. Stir the mixture until the pepper flakes melt completely in the honey. After steeping for 10 minutes, stir the whole mixture once more, and drink its entirety.
It is very important to cover all of these warm drinks while they steep. Not only they will stay warm but all the steam and any of the oils with their benefits will be there when you are going to inhale.