Natural cough remedies will help you and your family stay healthy. Coughing ensues when viruses, bacteria, dust, pollen or other substances irritate the nerve endings in the airways amid the throat and lungs.
A cough is the body’s technique of trying to clear the passages, and what a valiant effort the body makes in this effort.
While chronic coughs can be a sign of a serious sickness, most individuals consider a common cough to be more of an annoyance than a health problem.
Although side effects like chest pain, fatigue, and incontinence can go along with a cough, the more annoying complaints often have to do with a cough’s ability to interfere with your (and your family’s) sleep and the tendency to be annoying in otherwise quiet places.
Coupled with the germ-spreading issue, it certainly seems like treating your cough is the best thing to do.
Types of Cough
There are two main types of coughs, dry and productive. A productive cough is one that causes you to cough up phlegm or mucus.
This kind of cough should not be suppressed, as your body needs to rid itself of the filth that’s in your chest/lungs.
While it shouldn’t be suppressed, some of these home remedies will address a productive cough by including an expectorant, or something that slackens mucous and makes it easier for the body to get rid of.
Home Remedies for a Cough
Honey has been proved to work more efficiently to calm a cough than over-the-counter drugs. It is a rich demulcent with high viscosity and stickiness that does a wonderful job of coating and relieving those irritated mucous membranes.
Thanks to an enzyme inserted by bees when they harvest honey, it also contains antibacterial properties as well, which may help lessen how long you have a cough if it is due to a bacterial ailment.
Take a tablespoon of honey 1 to 3 times daily as required to control coughing. Take immediately before bed if a cough is disturbing your sleep. For children (from 2 years and above), you can adjust the dosing to a teaspoon.
Licorice Root Tea
Licorice root is equally an expectorant and demulcent, at the same time soothing your airways while loosening and reducing mucus, and easing congestion. It can also ease any swelling that may be irritating your throat.
Its main component, glycyrrhizin, is responsible for most of its effects. 30 to 50 times sweeter than sucrose (table sugar), it inhibits an enzyme 11more-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase.
This enzyme controls access of glucocorticoid (a steroid hormone) to steroid receptors, ultimately decelerating the conversion of cortisol to cortisone.
This raises the effect of cortisol and reducing inflammation. If you make use of steroids or have any issue with your kidneys, it is best to steer clear of licorice root.
Bring water to a boil and put the licorice root in a mug. Cover with water and soak for 10-15 minutes, drink the entire cup twice daily.
Also a well-known remedy for sore throats, salt water can ease the problem caused by a cough the same way it aids a sore (Osmosis).
When the concentration of salt is bigger outside of the cells in your mucous membranes, water flows out of the cells. This is done to balance things out.
When water leaves the cells, inflammation goes down, and discomfort is reduced. If you have a cough that happens to come along with swollen tissue, this is a good path to take. It can also help dislodge any phlegm that’s hanging out and allow you to eject it easily.
Mix salt in water until it is thoroughly dissolved. Gargle for 15 seconds, spit and repeat with the remaining water. Wash with clean water afterward.
Not only does the steam literally loosen mucous and phlegm, almost instantly, but you can put numerous essential oils that will convey wonderful healing benefits.
These benefits (anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, etc) will become airborne, so you inhale them while also inhaling in the steam.
For this particular mixture, I’ve included both tea tree oil and eucalyptus oil, which can help relieve and open your airways as well as help fend off bacteria or a virus.
You will need 3 drops of tea tree oil, a drop of eucalyptus oil, a bowl of water, and a soft clean towel. Get enough water to a boil, to halfway fill a medium-size heatproof bowl.
Pour the water into it, let it cool a little for 30-60 seconds, and put the essential oils, giving it a quick stirring to release the vapors.
Bend over the bowl and get as close as you can while still being comfortable (always remember that steam can seriously burn).
Use the towel or fabric to cover your head like a tent, trapping the steam, and inhale deeply. Ideally, do this for 5-10 minutes 2-3 times daily.
Thyme has been used by ancient men as a food spice and also as a remedy to sickness, Thyme eases the muscles of the trachea and bronchi, and also opens up airways. The result is less coughing, and increased relaxation.
You will need a handful of fresh thyme sprigs or 2 tablespoons dried thyme, 8 ounces of freshwater and Honey or lemon
Lightly squash the thyme, (with a mortar and pestle) and then put in a mug. Cover with 8 ounces of boiled water. Cover and allow it steep for 10-15 minutes and then add some lemon or honey to taste.
Drink and Repeat 2-3 times daily or as needed. It’s absolutely pleasant just before bedtime.
Pepper & Honey
Black pepper can make a great remedy for coughs that are accompanied by a lot of mucous or chest congestion.
If you’ve mistakenly leaned too close to black pepper while it’s been grounded, you know it can make you cough or prickle your nose.
This may not be entertaining on a regular basis, but it’s a plus if you need to eject all the nasty stuff that’s messing up your lungs.
The honey adds its antibacterial properties, and it makes it so the pepper isn’t too disturbing.
You can make black pepper syrup with honey, as shown below. If possible, use freshly ground black pepper, as the pre-ground pepper seems to lose some of its power
Put the pepper and honey in a mug and then cover with boiling water. Give it a stir to disperse the pepper flakes and dissolve in the honey. Soak for 10 minutes, stir once more, and drink all. Repeat once or twice a day as needed to loosen the mucus.
Ginger Peppermint Syrup
Spicy ginger functions as an expectorant, helping loosen and eject mucus from the lungs. It can also stop the aching tickle at the back of the throat that can cause a cough in the first place if you are experiencing a dry cough. The peppermint will also help soothe the irritating tickle of a cough.
You will need 3 tablespoons of chopped ginger, a tablespoon of dried peppermint, 4 cups of water and a cup of honey.
Slice the ginger and put it along with the peppermint to 4 cups of water. Bring the water to a boil and then lower the heat so that the liquid simmer. Simmer until the liquid has lessened by half, then strain.
Allow it cool slightly, and then mix in 1 cup of honey until it has been dissolved completely. Bottle and take 1 tablespoon every few hours as required to ease your cough. Keep in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.