Coughing is associated with a variety of health conditions, such as the common cold, influenza, upper respiratory infections, tuberculosis, asthma, and lung cancer.
Coughing can also be caused by allergies, dry air, dust, or a random tickle in your throat. Coughing is your body’s way of getting rid of harmful substances in your respiratory tract.
However, persistent coughing can be quite uncomfortable. These home remedies will help ease your cough.
Research has shown that honey is effective at easing cough. Specifically, according to Mayo Clinic, in one study, children two years of age and older with upper respiratory infections were given up to two teaspoons (10 milliliters) of honey before bed.
The honey appeared to reduce nighttime coughing and improve sleep. The results of the study indicated that honey was as effective as the common cough syrup ingredient, dextromethorphan.
Livestrong recommends choosing a honey darker in color to treat cough because they contain more antioxidants than the lighter-colored honey varieties do. Eat one to two teaspoons of honey before bedtime.
To treat a child’s cough, give one-half to one teaspoon of honey before bedtime. Don’t give honey to infants younger than one year of age because honey contains botulism spores, which an infant’s digestive system is not equipped to handle.
Peppermint contains menthol, which acts as a decongestant, loosening mucus so that you can cough it up more easily. Peppermint is also good for soothing your throat. You can drink peppermint tea, suck on peppermint lozenges, or inhale it through steam.
To inhale peppermint through steam, put some hot water into a large bowl. Add three to four drops of peppermint oil per 150 milliliters of hot water.
Lean your head over the bowl, and cover your head with a towel. Take deep breaths of the steam.
Eucalyptus is a great natural remedy for asthma, muscle and joint pain, pneumonia, boils, fever, gingivitis, and cough. Eucalyptus is a good cough remedy because it is an expectorant, loosening phlegm.
It’s important to consult a doctor before using eucalyptus oil because when it isn’t diluted enough, it can be toxic. You can suck on eucalyptus lozenges, use eucalyptus cough syrup, or add eucalyptus oil to hot water for inhalation to relieve your coughing.
Salt Water Gargle
Salt water has been used for centuries to soothe sore throats and relieve coughing. Salt contains anti-inflammatory properties, which makes it good at soothing irritated throats and reducing cough.
To make a salt water solution to gargle with, add one-half teaspoon of salt to one cup of warm water, and stir until the salt dissolves. Use the salt water solution to gargle with several times throughout the day.
Licorice Root Tea
Licorice root is both a demulcent and an expectorant; it soothes your airways and loosens and thins mucus. Licorice root can also reduce any inflammation that may be irritating your throat.
You should consult your doctor before consuming licorice root. You should not consume licorice root tea if you have high blood pressure, kidney disease, heart disease, or are taking steroids.
To make licorice root tea, put one teaspoon of dried licorice root into two cups of water, and boil it for five minutes. Remove from heat, and allow the herb to steep an additional five to 10 minutes.
Strain out the licorice root, and drink. You can also purchase licorice root tea bags from your local health food store.
Ginger is a natural remedy for several ailments, including nausea, headaches, and cold and flu symptoms, such as coughing. Ginger contains antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties and helps loosen congestion in your respiratory tract. It’s also good at soothing your throat.
You can make a ginger tea to ease your coughing. Cut up a few pieces of fresh ginger. Add them to one cup of water, and boil for two or three minutes.
Drink the tea while it’s warm. You can drink a cup of ginger tea several times each day.
Marshmallow has many uses. As a natural remedy, marshmallow can be used to treat the common cold, ulcerative colitis, stomach ulcers, skin irritation, irritable bowel syndrome, sore throat, Crohn’s disease, indigestion, bronchitis, asthma, and cough.
Marshmallow contains mucilage, which coats and soothes your throat when you drink it.
You can find marshmallow in capsules, tinctures, extracts, cough syrup, or tea. If you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or have diabetes, you should not use marshmallow root.
Additionally, if you take prescription medication, you should not use marshmallow root because it can coat your stomach and slow down the absorption of medication.
Mullein contains antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. It is also an expectorant, loosening mucus from the lining of your respiratory tract.
Mullein is not known to have any negative side effects and can be safely used to treat persistent cough related to chronic lung conditions. You can purchase mullein tea at your local health food store.
Alternatively, you can prepare your own mullein tea at home by steeping one to two teaspoons of dried mullein leaves or flowers in one and a half cups of boiling water for 15 to 20 minutes. Strain before drinking.
Turmeric contains antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. Turmeric may be especially helpful in treating coughing due to upper respiratory or throat infections. Mix one to two teaspoons of turmeric powder into one cup of milk.
Drink this twice a day to relieve coughing. It’s generally recommended that you use goat’s milk for this remedy because cow’s milk is known to increase phlegm.
Garlic contains antimicrobial, anti-fungal, antibacterial, and antiviral properties. Drinking garlic can relieve the itchiness and irritation in your throat that causes coughing.
Try boiling two or three garlic cloves in one cup of water. Add one teaspoon of oregano to it. Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature before you add honey, and drink it.
Almonds contain phenylalanine and l-carnitine, which help clear out your upper respiratory tract. Almonds also possess amandin. When mixed with milk, almonds are a good remedy for coughing, as the combination soothes your throat.
Soak five or six almonds in some water for eight to 10 hours. Put the almonds in a bowl along with one teaspoon of butter, and crush the almonds to make a paste.
Eat a little of the paste three or four times each day to help treat your cough.
Thyme contains antimicrobial properties. Thyme relaxes the muscles in your bronchi and trachea and opens up your airways, which results in less coughing.
Lightly bruise two tablespoons of dried thyme with a mortar and pestle, and place it into a coffee mug. Pour eight ounces of boiling water onto the thyme.
Cover the mug, and allow it to steep for 10 to 15 minutes. Strain out the herb. Add honey or lemon to taste before drinking the thyme tea.
You can also find recipes for thyme tea in this YouTube video. You can use either dried or fresh thyme for the recipe in this video.
Aloe vera gel contains antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties and is especially good at relieving a dry cough. Aloe vera also acts as an analgesic, soothing your sore throat.
Open a leaf of aloe up, and extract its gel. Eat it by itself, if you don’t mind the bitter taste. You can mix the gel with some honey or fruit juice to consume it as well.
Carrot juice is especially useful for treating chronic coughing due to asthma. During asthma attacks, your airways become irritated and constricted, which results in difficulty breathing and coughing.
Carrot juice contains beta-carotene and choline, both of which may help control asthma symptoms.
Try making a carrot juice and honey cough syrup. Cut a few carrots up into slices, and boil them until they are tender. Take the carrots out of the water, and mash them up.
Once the water is cool, add some honey to it, and pour it over the mashed up carrots. You can store the syrup in your refrigerator.
Wild Cherry Bark
Not only does wild cherry bark contain antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, it contains analgesic properties as well. Wild cherries open up your bronchioles and eases coughing.
To make wild cherry bark cough syrup, put one cup of honey, two teaspoons of wild cherry bark or wild cherries, and one tablespoon of fresh lemon juice into a saucepan. Heat the ingredients until they reach a boil.
Allow the syrup to cool for 10 minutes before you strain it and pour it into a clean glass container. To treat your cough, eat one tablespoon of the solution.
You can store the leftover syrup in your refrigerator. Pregnant women and children two years of age and under should not take this cough syrup.
Coughing can be caused by many different ailments, such as bronchitis, upper respiratory infections, asthma, throat irritation, and allergies. If you have a cough, try one or more of these natural remedies to treat it.
While these natural remedies are generally considered safe, it’s always best to consult with your doctor before you take any type of herb or supplement.