Through the consumption of some natural and home remedies for coughs, it is possible to speed recovery and get a feeling of relief faster. While a cough in its introductory stage does not seem like much, it can progress into something so vicious and incessant that it’ll leave you with sleepless nights. A cough is not to be taken lightly, as it could be a symptom of some bigger underlying pulmonary disease like bronchitis.
It is important to get yourself checked out as soon as you realize that your cough is taking longer than usual to go away. The doctor then will provide you with some home remedies for coughs like cough syrups for a cough that is harder to leave, and a few everyday habits that you could adopt in order to prevent a bad cough all in all. All of these topics are discussed in detail for you below.
1. Most Effective Natural & Home Remedies for Coughs
It does not get any better than using natural ingredients to treat and even prevent health problems. With using nature’s own goodness, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain. As they come with no side effects, they are completely safe to use. Be mindful of not overdoing any treatment as that could prove to be counterproductive. Here is a list of effective and scientifically proven natural home remedies for coughs:
1.1) Sleeping With Your Head Lifted
For some people, the reason behind their cough may be the dripping of mucus from the nose to the back of the throat. How sleeping with your head elevated helps is that it reduces this dripping, which is relieving for not just the throat but also yourself. This tip will help with a better night’s sleep, for the night time is the time people cough most vigorously if the underlying cause is the drainage of mucus.
1.2) Salted Warm Water Gargles
Gargling is an efficient remedy if you feel a cold or a cough creeping up on you. How the salt helps is that it assists in draining surplus fluid from the inflamed areas of the throat, which force the symptoms to go away. Gargling is also useful all in all in order to thin mucus and remove irritants that may be present in the throat.
How to use?
Dissolve a small amount of salt in some warm – not boiling hot – water and mix. Gargle with this solution at least thrice a day, until you start to feel the symptoms go away.
1.3) Drinking Warm Fluids
Be it a cup of plain hot water, or a cup of hot tea, consuming it at least twice a day will help reduce the inflammation in your throat and provide with a soothing effect. You could also work on making yourself some hot soup, as that is not just good for your throat but is also a tasty treat.
1.4) Honey With Black Pepper
Undoubtedly, honey is among the natural remedies most used and most effective against winters ailments such as sore throat, colds and coughs. Honey is known to have anti-inflammatory and antibacterial therapeutic properties that help to eliminate bacteria and soothe just about anything. In addition, it helps to strengthen the immune system of your organism.
In the other side, black pepper has several therapeutic properties among it promotes blood circulation and mucus flow. These properties make the mixture of black pepper with honey to be one of the most effective home remedies for coughs and that gives quick results.
How to use?
For fat coughs, take a teaspoon of honey with black pepper powder sprinkled on it three times a day.
1.5) Honey, Lemon Juice, and Water Concoction
While some may think lemon juice to be more of harming than useful when it comes to cough, it is actually quite the other way around. Lemon juice is proven to have antibacterial properties, which just like honey can help with any area ranging from your skin to your throat. A mixture of all the three remedies – honey, lemon, and water – comes with the combined goodness of all of them, which is remarkable when it comes to relieving coughs. If each of these single ingredients can be effective upon consumption, imagine the strength of the three of them combined. This concoction has the goodness of honey’s anti-inflammatory properties, lemon juice’s anti-bacterial properties, and warm water’s soothing properties. It has proved itself to be amongst the best home remedies for coughs.
How to use?
Mix honey and lemon juice into a cup of warm water and drink it three times a day to relieve coughing. Taking this mixture before going to sleep will be effective in relieving cough at night too.
Ginger has already established itself as extremely beneficial in the world of medicine, it is also used in various drugs. Known to be among the best home remedies for coughs, ginger has a number of beneficial features; It is a natural pain reliever, it also helps to calm the nerves and roughness caused by inflammation of the throat. It also has anti-inflammatory properties and helps to clean the respiratory tracts.
How to use?
Ginger can be used in various ways to relive coughs; Chewing on some ginger with salt sprinkled on it can stop rapidly coughs. However, a taste as strong as ginger’s is an acquired one and not everyone can handle it. If you are one of those that are unable to, try to drink some ginger tea regularly. Cut the fresh ginger into small slices and put a little crushed in a glass of water and leaving it to boil.
Drink this tea three to four times a day to relieve sore throat, non-stop coughs and even phlegm. You can also add a little lemon juice and honey to drink.
1.7) Thyme Tea
Since antiquity, thyme has been used as a natural remedy for coughs, colds and digestive and gastrointestinal disorders.
Thyme consists of compounds called flavonoids which are the source of antioxidant elements. In addition, it has antiseptic properties that make it an excellent nasal and bronchopulmonary decongestant. All these properties help relieve coughs and also those caused by bronchitis, whooping coughs and upper respiratory tract inflammation.
How to use?
Add some crushed thyme leaves to a cup of water and let it steep for 10 minutes, with the lid closed. When done, strain it and drink.
1.8) Turmeric and Milk or Honey
Turmeric contains curcumin, an active element that has antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties.
Turmeric contains curcumin, polyphenol which is an active element having a lot of potential therapeutic activities. It has antiviral, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic properties. This make it an essential substance which not only destroy the bacteria causing the disease, but also promotes natural defenses. Unlike synthetic antibiotics in abundance found in pharmacy, this remedy has no negative effect on the intestinal microflora. It is therefore very effective in treating viral infections such as coughing and cold.
It is usually mixed with milk to make a mixture called “golden milk” or with honey to make “golden honey”. This is a famous remedy that has been going on for generations and is sworn by. It is not just one of the known home remedies for coughs, but it is also a home remedy for other pain that you could encounter.
How to use?
Golden milk: Mix one teaspoon of turmeric in one cup of warm milk and drink this solution daily. The antibacterial properties of turmeric are useful in relieving cough, while the warm nature of milk helps soothe irritation. However, be sure too not use too much of turmeric, as its warm temperament can heat your body up on the inside.
Golden honey: Add 1 tablespoon of turmeric in 5 tablespoons of organic honey. Mix well and place the mixture in a jar. From the first symptoms, take half a teaspoon of the mixture three times a day.
1.9) Apple Cider Vinegar
For centuries, cider vinegar has been used to treat coughs because it promotes liquefaction and expectoration of mucus.
Cider vinegar is rich in phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, sulfur, fluoride, iron, boron and silica, which contribute to its energizing and healing power.
In addition, cider vinegar is very rich in vitamin and antioxidants. It contains about 600 mg/liter of phenolic compounds. Du to this composition, the cider vinegar has the following peculiarities:
- natural antibiotics,
- a cellular cleaner and regenerator,
- an immunostimulant,
- a great tonic of the nervous system and heart,
- an excellent remineralizing agent,
- a digestive stimulant,
- an anti-cholesterol …
All these therapeutic virtues have made apple cider vinegar one of the best natural and home remedies for coughs and sore throats.
How to use?
For coughs: Mix in a bowl 5 tablespoons of honey with 6 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar.
Swallow 1 tablespoon of this mixture 4 or 5 times a day, including 1 before going to bed.
Irritated throat du to coughs: In a glass of hot water, pour 1 tablespoon of cider vinegar and 1 tablespoon of salt. You stir it well, then gargle many times.
Everyone has heard and speaks of the saying that goes ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’. But that is not the only thing that keeps the doctor away. Recent studies have shown that a clove of garlic a day is just as useful at keeping the doctor away as an apple is, and is one of the most effective home remedies for coughs. The antimicrobial properties in garlic help relieve not just a cough, but a cold too. It is useful in thinning mucus, which makes it easier for us to spit it out rather than having it lodged there.
How to use?
Boil 2-3 cloves of garlic in a glass of water and add a teaspoon of thyme and leave it to cool to room temperature, add some honey and drink it. This will help to breathe properly and relieve the symptoms of coughs.
Another way is to eat a clove of ground garlic after mixing it with some honey.
One of the simplest home remedies for coughs is onion. Onion is globally known to be a good natural expectorant. Its properties favor the elimination of bacteria and stimulate the cleaning of the respiratory tract.
This food has a high concentration of antioxidants, purifying properties and detoxifiers that can help control coughs. In addition, The onion has the power to relieve the irritation of the throat.
How to use?
– 1 Medium onion
– 2 glasses of water (400 ml)
– The juice of a lemon
– 2 teaspoons of honey
Peel and cut the onion into large pieces, then boil it with the two glasses of water for 20 minutes.
Let stand for 5 to 10 minutes, and add the two teaspoons of honey and the juice of a lemon.
Take one spoon two to three times a day.
Another very effective method of fighting night coughings due to a flow of mucus from the nose into the throat is to peel then cut an onion into two or four parts, then place it on a plate near the bed.
1.12) Licorice Root
Anti-inflammatory, expectorant and softening, licorice, and more precisely its roots, effectively fight against the inflammations of the respiratory system or diseases of the digestive system.
Licorice root derives its therapeutic virtues from the four hundred chemical constituents it contains such as flavonoids, coumarins, sugars, and the like. However, licorice should not be consumed at too high doses and over a long period because it can raise blood pressure.
How to use?
As a tea, it is possible to drink three cups of an infusion prepared with 2 to 4 grams of dried roots per 150 ml of boiling water. It is recommended not to exceed 12 grams per day.
Mullein is particularly used for clearing and regenerating pulmonary alveoli. It is considered not only as a tonic but also as a regenerative lung and a bronchodilator. In addition, it has a compound that acts on the central nervous system and stimulates the expectoration of the mucus. It is also softening and anti-inflammatory. It is used in prevention to protect against bronchitis, colds and coughs or to treat pulmonary insufficiency, asthma and any form of respiratory congestion.
How to use?
It is used as a tea. Put 1 tablespoon of dried mullein leaves in a cup of boiling water and leave to infuse for 5 minutes. Drink 2 to 4 cups a day.
2. About Cough Syrups
2.1) Types of Cough Syrups
Perhaps it is due to the fact that home remedies for coughs just aren’t cutting it for you that you find yourself wanting to visit a doctor. If, however, you are unable to visit the doctor for your cough, for whatever reason it may be, you should at least be able to understand and recognize the different types and jobs of cough syrups. An over-the-top cough suppressant is something that you wish out of your own knowledge, while usually it is the pharmacist that guides you. There are 4 different types of cough syrups, all meant for a different purpose, and the nature in which they work is all dependent on the active ingredients present. The 4 types are as follows:
These are useful in suppressing coughs by forming a layer of protection above the pharynx, which in simpler terms is the throat. These are children friendly. The active ingredients in these are sugar and glycerol.
What these essentially do is they result in an increase of production phlegm (mucus) in the lungs, and this makes it easier for us to cough it all out. These contain a range of active ingredients, and should not be given to children of ages 6 to 11.
As the name suggests, these reduce congestion in the lungs and nose by narrowing the blood vessels in said areas.
These are used in reducing the urge of your body to cough. While they may give temporary relief, they are not a permanent solution, and could result in side effects such as drowsiness and nausea.
2.2) Problems with cough syrups
Cough syrups do not just come with negative side effects like nausea, drowsiness, vomiting and constipation, but they are also potentially harmful for a lot of other reasons. Cough syrups, to some people, provide a sort of high that they gradually become addicted to. It is the fact that they fight off the sleep that comes with a cough syrup dosage, which makes them feel like they’re walking on clouds. Thinking that these syrups are not harmful, those that get high off it consume more and more of it. This can lead to the abuse of said syrups, and as it has already been established, excess of anything, be it good or bad, is never beneficial and is instead harmful. Try to give home remedies for coughs a shot first, and if they do not work out, then and only then should you invest in cough syrups.
3. Homeopathy for Coughs
3.1) Understanding Homeopathy
Homeopathy is the use of natural methods to heal a person out of their problems. Homeopathic treatments claim to ignite and initiate the healing process of one’s own body. It is on a rise in today’s world, and has also been regarded as a good therapeutic system by the World Health Organization. Aside from home remedies for coughs, homeopathy too is said to have done wonders.
How homeopathic medicines work is that it states that the human body is well aware of its actions, and when symptoms to a health complication arise, it is the body’s way of fighting it. So, essentially, what homeopathic medicines do is that they provide the body with the extra information that it needs in order to fight the disease off. Homeopathic studies believe that the dosage of medicine should be at a minimum, as the purpose is to just ignite and boost the response system of the body. The rest of it is taken care of on its own.
The reason why homeopathy is on the rise is because of its understanding and compassion towards each and every single person as a different entity and not just a label or collection of diseases. Homeopathic medicines also aim to cleanse one’s body of not just those things that are harmful, but it is also calming spiritually and mentally.
3.2) The Good and Bad of Homeopathy
Just like anything else in this world, homeopathy too has its own pros and cons. However, as you too will see, the pros of homeopathy outweigh its cons.
The best part about homeopathic medicine is that it is a 100 percent natural. If you find that the results are taking too long to show and grow tired, you can leave and you will not suffer from any withdrawals. These medicines are not addictive in the slightest, and they do no suppress the immune system. Instead, they provide it with guidance to work better.
The main con to homeopathic medicine, however, is the fact that it takes extremely long to work. What you could do for more efficiency is coupling one of the home remedies for coughs with a homeopathic medicine. It is, however, a slow process and some end up quitting halfway due to the late results. Also, finding the right remedy for you may take some time. However, it is all well worth the wait.
3.3) How to Use Homeopathy for Coughs?
Many homeopathic remedies are effective in relieving coughs, whether it be dry, fat or chronic:
- If the cough is dry or is accompanied by a burn in the throat and is very noisy, then take 3 granules of Spongia tosta, 3 to 5 times a day.
- To relieve the persistent and irritating coughs that dry the nasal mucosa, then take 5 granules of Bryonia alba 5 times a day until symptoms disappear.
- In cases where the cough is fat and accompanied by severe expectoration of mucus, take 5 granules of Mercurius solubilis 3 times a day.
4. Recommended Tips to Prevent Coughs
Prevention is better than cure, and same is the deal in the case of cough. Here are some everyday tips that you can incorporate into your daily routine in order to keep yourself as far away from cough as possible.
- Wash your hands as much as possible
Washing your hands as much as possible keeps the germs from staying on your hands and entering your body. If it is not possible to wash your hands as regularly, then invest in a good hand sanitizer.
- Refrain from touching yourself
One of the most common ways for germs to enter our bodies is through those that we attract by touching our own eyes and nose. Keep yourself from touching said areas.
- Have healthy food
A healthy diet filled with the right mix of nutrients could keep your immune system healthy, which will keep coughs and flus away. Try to eat as many fruits and vegetables in a day as you can.
- Stay away from those already infected
If you see someone with a runny nose trying to shake your hand, refuse politely and keep yourself at a distance from them. It is very easy for germs to transfer from one body to another, and you should keep distance between your own body and another in order to prevent this mode of transfer.
Exercising will not just get you sweating – which, by the way, is useful in the release of toxins – but it will also keep your immune system healthy and running.
- Get enough sleep
You will notice that those who are overworking themselves are more likely to fall sick. This is because your body does not have the energy to fight off said health problems, and so it does not fight as hard as it normally would. Therefore, it is important to get at least 8 hours of sleep each night.
- Avoid touching areas that are frequently touched by others
One seemingly harmless visit to the restroom could prove to be actually quite the opposite. Touching areas such as the door handle, the flush lever and the faucet could result in a transfer of an incredible amount of germs. Therefore, it is not just important to wrap your hands in paper towel when dealing with such areas, but to also wash your hands thoroughly when done.
In this article, we have presented the most effective natural and home remedies for coughs, choose the one that suits you and take it for several days to get good results.
It is not recommended to take several at the same time as this could be bad for your health.
If after a few weeks, coughing is still present, consult a doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment.
Go further and read about essential oils for cough relief: