A persistent cough is one of the most discomforting health issues which we face in routine. It may not sound like an actual problem, but only the one who is suffering knows how bad it can be.
Apparently, no one wants to be that one person who is sitting quietly in a group fun discussion or the one who is firmly coughing during a class lecture. No one intends to be that person which means there must be something done for a cough.
It makes people conscious of touching, physically contacting or eating with you for fear of getting infected. If you sneeze with a cough, everyone will eventually start looking at you as it makes them uncomfortable.
Here is everything to know about every day and stubborn coughs and how to get rid of them by using simple home ingredients.
What Is A Cough?
A cough has no general definition. Having an off and on cough is pretty average. A routine cough is the one which is used to make the throat clear before speaking. It’s the phlegm and some other irritants which may block the throat when you plan to talk. So clearing the throat before speaking is very reasonable to see and do.
A prolonged, stubborn coughing indicates a chronic condition. It shows that there is something wrong going on. It can be anything such as allergy, any viral or bacterial infection or sinus problem, etc.
One rare type of a cough doesn’t show up as an outcome of an infection. It is not even related to lungs; rather it is due to a disease called Gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD.
How To Treat A Cough At Home?
Only the less severe cough such as cold, allergy or sinus can be addressed with various home-based remedies instead of medicines. Using herbs for a cough is not a viable idea as they always leave their remains.
It is better to avoid chemicals and stop using the antibiotics at once. The best way is to heal them with natural remedies at home. For example in the case of common coughs, the following things can help.
Yes, that’s right. Honey is the real old solution for the throat and all related problems. It contributes to relieve a cough more effective than medicine. The medicines have dextromethorphan in them which is a major cough suppressant.
However, the best is to make your own cough medicine at home. Just mix two tablespoons of organic honey into warm water or any herbal tea. You can also add lemons for the flavor enhancing.
It will open the blocked nose, heals the sinus, gets rid of congestion and helps to reduce coughing. You can also eat a tablespoon honey thrice a day for remedial reasons.
Salt And Water Gargle
One of the best possible remedies which no one will tell you is to rinse with salt in water. It may sound bland, but this simple solution works for all throat problems and cough.
Just take one cup of warm water and mix one quarter teaspoon salt in it. Mix it well and use this for gargle. Repeat it 4-6 times a day for better effects. This remedy is not suitable for the children under 6years of age.
What if someone tells you to eat pineapple for getting rid of a cough? You may think it to be a crazy idea. But there is a high probability that you haven’t heard of bromelain.
Bromelain is an enzyme pineapple which is helpful to suppress a cough and loosen the mucus from throat. Eating a slice of pineapple three times a day can help to reduce a cough by a significant level.
It is also helpful for sinus and flu. Bromelain is also available in the form of supplements. But they are not recommended for the people who take blood thinners due to possible interactions.
Make sure that you don’t take any antibiotics while taking bromelain supplements. In this case, an advice from the doctor is necessary.
Thyme is a herb which is associated with various beneficial effects for a long-term. For respiratory problems, it has unique benefits to offer.
Thyme leaves help to relieve a cough, and it treats even an old stubborn cough. You can use it even in a chronic condition such as bronchitis.
The natural flavonoids are helpful to make a cough go away. You can use thyme tea like other herbal teas. Add honey for the extra medicinal effects and lemon for flavor enhancing.
Peppermint leaves have a healing and soothing effect. One of their active ingredients is methanol which soothes the throat in case of an infection.
It breaks down the mucus and let the throat heal naturally. The best way to use methanol is by taking peppermint leaves made tea. In case of cold and nasal congestion, also, taking a steam with peppermint oil can also be helpful.
If you can arrange, a peppermint steam bath would be the perfect choice to make. Using only 2-3 drops will be sufficient for 150 ml hot water.
Marshmallows are a product of Althaea officinalis which is a tree that blooms in summer. The leaves, stem, and roots of this plant are a part of traditional medicine for long as a treatment for colds and coughs.
This means that marshmallows have a natural potential to suppress a cough. Unlike many herbal options, it is entirely safe for human consumption.
It has a compound called mucilage in it which helps to reduce the itching and discomfort in the throat. For the remedial purpose, marshmallow root can be taken to make herbal tea.
There are also marshmallow capsules that are available. But using tea is more beneficial since it soothes the throat and makes you feel better. It is not suitable for the use of children under 13.
The probiotics are microorganisms that are beneficial for the health. This is not a remedy but enforcement of probiotic use which eventually helps you to avoid such problems naturally.
Probiotics help you to maintain a healthy gastrointestinal bacterial flora which improves the digestion. It makes your digestive system healthy and reduces the risk of any problem.
The probiotics are the natural part of many dairy products. Such as Lactobacillus is found in milk. It helps to reduce the chances of flu, allergy, and cold which means it suppresses a cough too.
So the best way is to add probiotic-rich food in your diet. Additionally, you can start taking probiotic supplements of any reputable brand.
How To Prevent a Cough?
Once after treating the cough successfully, you need to know what should you do to reduce the risk of getting a cough again. To be honest, there is no as such thing which makes you immune to a cough.
A cough is an indication from the body that there is something wrong. But for some specific types of a cough such as a cold-related cough which has flu as an active part of it, you can get flu shots.
Some of the fundamental changes which you can make in your lifestyle are as follows.
- Cover your nose and face when there is dust or smoke around.
- Clean the areas, especially the surfaces that are in direct contact with you.
- Take care of your hygiene. When you get fresh, make sure to clean your nose too, it will get rid of all possible allergens.
- Keep your body hydrated and drink plenty of water.
- When you are having a cold, always cover your face when you sneeze. Do not spread it.
- Don’t come in contact with people when you are not feeling well. Such as when you have a cold or flu, stay home and treat it first.
- Wash your hands after sneezing, coughing, eating and using the toilet. Also, wash your hands when you come in contact with a sick person.
In the case of allergies, there is a high possibility of an allergen affecting you. The best what you can do is to identify and avoid them. There is no way that it cannot infect you, the only thing which you can do is to prevent them.
When To See A Doctor?
You need emergency medical care if your cough is not going away for long. Also when a cough starts affecting your ability to breathing or, you find blood in your cough mucus. It is the right time to consult a doctor.
Following are some symptoms which indicate an infection as a part of your cough. Check them when you have a persistent cough.
- Cold chills
- Fever, moderate to high
- Coughing with phlegm which is green or yellow
- General weakness