We cough when our body needs to clear our throat and airways from mucus, irritants, or foreign substances. It is a reflex action that helps to protect our respiratory system from harmful particles and infections. It occurs when something irritates the throat or lungs, such as dust or postnasal drip. It helps to clear the air passages, but frequent coughing can cause inflammation of the upper airway lining cells. Whatever the reason, here are some ways to reduce your coughs and get relief:
Honey is an effective remedy for a sore throat and may be more helpful than some over-the-counter cough medications. Mix up to 2 teaspoons of honey with herbal tea or warm water and lemon. Infants under 12 months shouldn’t be given honey because of the risk of botulism.
Probiotics are tiny organisms that can give you many health benefits by balancing the good bacteria in your gut. This can help improve your immune system, which can fight off infections. Studies show that taking probiotics may reduce upper respiratory infections. Probiotics can be found in supplements, yogurt, miso soup, and kombucha. Different manufacturers may suggest different daily doses.
Bromelain is an enzyme found in pineapples that may help suppress coughs and relieve sinusitis and allergy-based sinus issues. Eat a slice of pineapple or drink 3.5 ounces of fresh pineapple juice three times a day. However, people taking blood thinners or antibiotics like amoxicillin should avoid bromelain.
Peppermint leaves have healing properties and peppermint oil can help relieve cold symptoms and soothe coughs. You can drink peppermint tea or inhale peppermint vapors from a steam treatment. To make a steam treatment, add 7 or 8 drops of peppermint essential oil to boiled water, drape a towel over your head and take deep breaths above the water.
Marshmallow root is a plant that has been used for centuries to treat sore throats and coughs. It contains mucilage, which coats the throat and has a soothing effect. A recent study found that the plant can reduce coughing due to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidative properties. Marshmallow root is available in tea or capsule form and can be helpful for a cough with a sore throat. However, it is not recommended for children.