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Has your cough gotten worse in just a few days and you just can’t seem to stop yourself from coughing at night? Well, we understand, it can be pretty annoying and painful! So, what should you do? Chug on a few bottles of cough syrup or pop a few pills? No, we wouldn’t advise you to do any of that!
First try to understand why you are suffering from coughing, and then seek natural remedies to cure the same. Remember, all the remedies work best when you use them right at the onset of the condition. But have you wondered what a cough is? And why is it particularly difficult to get rid of a cough? We bet you have! That’s why we’re here to give you a quick lowdown of coughing and related conditions.
A cough protects you as it expels stuff that does not belong to your lungs and windpipe, such as inhaled dirt or food.
What Causes Cough?
There are a few causes that trigger a cough. Taking care of the causes can so often provide great relief from the symptoms. We are used to symptomatic treatments, which is why we keep suffering from recurring coughing problems. Some of the triggers that set you off on a coughing bout are the following:
- Viruses- You are most likely to get a cough from cold and flu. Some kind of coughs do go away after a while as the mucus gets expelled out of your body. But there are some kinds of cough, especially the dry cough, which refuse to go away. One reason for it could be that coughing irritates your lungs, and when your lung gets irritated you tend to cough again, and it becomes a never-ending process.
- Asthma and allergies- If you suffer from asthma or allergies, inhaling a kind of mold can set off a spate of coughing as you try to take out the irritant.
- Irritant- Even if you don’t suffer from allergies, irritants like strong perfumes, cold air and smoke can precipitate a coughing spree.
- Acid reflux- If you suffer from heartburn or acidity, stomach acids rush back to your throat, especially at night, and it irritates your windpipe, causing you to cough.
- Congested nose- When your nose is congested, mucus retracts from your nose to your throat, making you cough. This kind of problem can be caused by a sinus infection, allergies, cold, flu and similar.
- Other reasons- There are other reasons which can cause coughing as well such as sleep apnea, lung inflammation and so on.
Though most coughs are harmless and go away after a few days, some coughs can last for a longer period of time. You need to find out the underlying causes, such as tuberculosis and asthma. So, don’t ignore the coughing symptoms for too long, and get yourself checked for a more potent health issue.
Home Remedies to Treat Coughs
While coughing is just about endurable while you are in the quietude of your home, things become uncomfortable when you suddenly suffer from a bout of coughing in the middle of a crowded room. You feel as if all eyes are on you, don’t you? Well, if you are nodding your head in agreement, get on board with our cough remedies. They will help you get relief from dry and wet coughs:
1. Raw organic Honey
Raw organic honey gives immediate relief from persistent coughing, simply because it is a rich demulcent and highly viscous, which is why it helps soothe the irritated mucous membranes. Also, honey contains antibacterial properties which help you get rid of a cough if it is due to bacterium proliferation.
Here is what you can do, take 1 tablespoon of honey 1-3 times daily as required to control coughing. Eat it before you hit the sack, as intermittent coughing disrupts your sleep.
2. Ginger Peppermint Syrup
Are you one of those people who guiltily looked forward to having a teaspoonful or two of cough syrups because they tasted good? Then you’ll love the ginger peppermint syrup; it comes closest to cough syrup, and has additional benefits because it’s completely natural.
Taste is just one aspect of the whole thing; ginger also has mucous loosening properties which expel the mucus from the lungs. It soothes down the irritations at the back of your throat which activate coughing. Don’t you feel like you wish you had something to soothe down your throat when you are hit by a bout of coughing? Well you’ve just got one!
Ginger and peppermint syrup is just one of the old tried and tested methods that still jostle for primacy among a host of modern medicines. The peppermint provides the right accompaniment to soothe down an irritated throat.
Chop 3 tablespoons of ginger and add 1 tablespoon of dried peppermint to 4 cups of water. Bring to a boil and then allow the liquid to simmer on low heat. Keep heating it until the liquid is reduced by half, then strain it. Let it cool down, and then stir in 1 cup of honey until it has blended in completely. Store it in a bottle and take 1 tablespoon of this magical concoction every few hours to get blessed relief from a cough. Keep it under refrigeration and consume within 3 weeks.
There is no end to the miracles that this magical spice can weave. This spice has been used for ages to treat various ailments and even chronic illnesses. It has antibacterial, antifungal properties that work great for easing cough symptoms.
A half a teaspoon of turmeric in your piping hot milk is all you need to give your throat much-needed relief. It is a popular remedy and is being touted as an elixir. Heat a glass of milk, mix in half a teaspoon of turmeric powder and add half a teaspoon of black pepper powder along with a tablespoon of coconut oil to up the bio-availability of turmeric, and you will be amazed at its effectiveness. Have it before you call it a night as it helps induce sound sleep too. Now there, they don’t call this a miracle drink for nothing!
Lemons are not only known for their zesty taste, but also because they are full of vitamin C – the key ingredient to fight infections. The fact that it also reduces inflammation is an added bonus. You can use lemon to get relief from different kinds of coughs. Additionally, it is easily available and refreshes your throat, providing you with considerable relief. Churn up this lemon syrup and bid a goodbye to your stubborn coughing fit.
A simple cough syrup can be concocted by blending two tablespoons of lemon juice and one tablespoon of honey. You need to drink this several times a day to get relief.
Garlic is a particularly effective expectorant which helps get rid of coughing really quick. Several studies done on garlic have come up with amazing results. The microbial properties of garlic not only help prevent colds, but also reduce the symptoms of persistent coughing. In fact, including a little bit of garlic to your diet can not only stave off colds but also prevent other chronic diseases.
Here is what you need to do, lightly crush about 5 cloves of garlic, half a teaspoon of Kala jeera or black cumin and a one or two red chilies and sauté it with ghee. Add a little bit of salt to it. Consume when still hot, you can also have it with rice. This gives immense relief from a cough and cold.
The gradual build up of sputum can increase a feeling of congestion in the chest and entire respiratory tract. So, what you need to do is expel this sputum, which will provide you great relief from a cough and congestion. Jaggery is full of many vital vitamins and minerals; it also boosts immunity and maintains the warmth of the body, especially in the winter months.
Make a decoction by boiling a few peppercorns with water for a good 20 minutes; you can also blend in a little bit of cumin if you want, and jaggery of course and drink it up.
Flaxseeds not only act as a wonderful demulcent, but are also a potent expectorant. Demulcents help moisten the lining of the throat, thus easing the irritation of the throat. If you boil flax seeds in water, you will get a thick gel-like substance that helps treat throat and bronchial tract discomfort. Honey and lemon are regarded as mild antibiotics that make this concoction super effective.
Here is what you need to do, boil 2 to 3 tablespoons of flax seeds in a cup of water until the water thickens considerably. Strain the liquid and then add 3 tablespoons of honey and lemon juice. You need to consume at least 1 tablespoon every time you have a coughing fit.
Onion contains some active components that help strengthen the immune system, and also work as a natural antibiotic; it is also anti-inflammatory, and works as an expectorant too. This is one of the simplest home remedies to cure a cough.
Here is what you can do, combine one-half teaspoon of onion juice with one teaspoon of pure honey. Consume this solution at least twice a day to get effective results that soothe your throat and alleviate incessant coughing.
Cayenne has analgesic properties that help numb the sensation of pain by blocking the Substance P. The substance P is a component that carries the sensation of pain to the brain. Now if you are feeling under the weather after a stint of coughing or if your throat feels irritated or hurts, drinking cayenne tea is one way to desensitize the tickling and reduce the coughing.
Cayenne also helps reduce chest pain due to incessant coughing. It has warm and stimulating properties as well.
Here is what you can do, make a healthy cough syrup by blending one-fourth teaspoon of cayenne pepper, one-fourth teaspoon of ground ginger, one tablespoon of honey and one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar. Add two tablespoons of water to the concoction and you will have a really effective drink on your hands.
Make sure you drink the syrup at least two to three times a day for great relief.
10. Carrot Juice
Carrots are extremely beneficial vegetables as they are a rich source of carotene, which is very important for eye health. They are also abundant in vitamins like vitamins B, C, and K, and a host of other minerals like iron, potassium, manganese, magnesium, calcium, and phosphorus.
Carrots help boost your immune system like no other. These nutritious vegetables act as a soothing balm for respiratory problems, and can provide great respite from colds, coughs, bronchitis, and asthma.
Here is what you can do, juice at least four to five carrots and add adequate water to dilute it. To add the right bit of sweetness and other benefits, add one teaspoon of honey, especially for its antibacterial properties.
Drink the juice at least three to four times a day until you get great relief.
When to See a Doctor
You will find most of the times coughs do not cause any harm. However, if your cough refuses to subside even after a week; it’s time to pay that visit to a doctor. You need to show yourself to a doctor, especially when you suffer from the following symptoms,
- If you suffer from breathing problems.
- If you suffer from acid reflux and heartburn.
- If your cough spews out blood.
- Persistent fever or night sweats.
- If you have trouble falling asleep.
Be mindful of these changes as they can mean something more than just a cough and cold symptom. Take good care of yourself and always try the salt water gargle first, as soon as you feel the beginning of a sore throat and cold. Besides the saltwater gargle remedy, try the above remedies to get quick relief. Also, this is the time you must indulge in hot soups and warm drinks! A little bit of mindfulness can go a long way in curing persistent coughing. So, what are you waiting for? Try these remedies and let us know whether any of these remedies were any good to treat your cold and cough!