Being troubled with persistent cough can be a really difficult situation. Being that odd man out breaking the silence of a lecture hall or being responsible for making people protect their food while at a restaurant while you are overwhelmed with a fit that is beyond control can be embarrassing as well as make you feel low. Breaking into a fit of cough can be distressing both physically as well as morally.
Types of Cough
Cough is differentiated into two main types namely dry and productive. When there is a lot of mucous commonly termed as phlegm that appears when you cough then it is named productive cough. Suppressing a productive cough is never recommended because the type of cough and helps eliminate unwanted matter clogged in your chest. In order to loosen the mucous and to make it easier for the body to eliminate it certain remedies can be utilized. One such way to help get rid of the mucous is the use of an expectorant. It is certainly not recommended to use products to suppress the productive cough.
A dry cough however is completely different when compared to a productive cough. Dry cough can be caused due to allergies, a byproduct of cold, a very dirty surrounding or some kind of a throat irritation. Unlike a productive cough we would definitely have to do everything to make a dry cough go away. In order to get rid of dry cough we can opt to demulcents that help in soothing the mucous membranes thereby removing the substance that causes dry cough. Cough syrups are formulated using these demulcents. However, resorting to natural remedies is much better because they taste better as well as do not have any side effects.
The Various Natural Remedies For Cough Are
Honey is considered to be very effective in treatment of cough and is much more efficient in comparison to drugs. Being highly viscous and sticky, honey helps in coating and soothing the mucous membranes that are affected. Honey also naturally contains certain antibacterial effects which acts on bacteria if the cough is due to bacterial attack. Though honey is very effective in adults as well as kids, a lot of care needs to be taken if administering to children below the age of two because there is always the risk of botulism.
To improve the results honey can be mixed with pepper and this will help in expelling all phlegm that is clogging up your chest. Pepper is vastly known for its culinary benefits and if considered the most traded spice. However, the less known facts about pepper is that it can be used as a remedy for productive cough. The tickling effects that pepper produces when being inhaled can be very useful you need to expel the phlegm immediately. Adding honey and pepper gives you additional benefits as honey is antibacterial and also works by reducing the irritation of pepper.
- Licorice Root
Congestion can easily be managed by the intake of licorice root as it is both a demulcent as well as an expectorant. It works by soothing the throat as well as thinning the mucous making it easy to expel. Any type of inflammation that irritate the throat can also be soothed by taking licorice root. The positive effects of licorice root is due to the presence of a constituent called glycyrrhizin. This ingredient is much sweeter than table sugar and has an enzyme called 11 beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase which helps to regulate access off glucocorticoid to steroid receptors and therefore slows down the conversion of cortisol to cortisone. The increased effect of cortisol helps in reducing the inflammation. However, it is best to stay away from licorice root if you are on steroids for any disorders.
- Salt water gargle
The most common and best remedy for a sore throat is gargling with salted warm water. The discomfort caused by cough can easily be relieved with this method. This method works by the rule of osmosis is where when the salt concentration is higher on the outside water always flows out of the cells to balance everything. The swelling of cells reduces considerably plain water is expelled thereby reducing the discomfort. Gargling with salted water also help remove any phlegm that hangs out to cause discomfort.
When it comes to congestion, cold or cough there is nothing that beats a good steam. Steam immediately loosens the mucous and the phlegm and also help heal the throat when essential oils are added to the water. The anti-viral, antibacterial and the anti-inflammatory properties that these essential oils contain become airborne and when you breathe in and inhale these properties they help in healing the throat.
Even during the time of the Black death which was considered a plague thyme was being used liberally. During the time of the plague people burnt large bundles of thyme and also sometimes carried thyme in their pockets to keep off the disease. The muscles of the throat can be relaxed by using thyme and in turn the trachea and bronchi open up resulting in less of cough and discomfort.
- Ginger and peppermint
Ginger has a soothing effect on the throat and it also is an expectorant which helps in thinning the mucous and making it easy to expel from the lungs. You experience a painful tickle at the back of the throat when you have dry cough, this tickling sensation can be eased by the intake of spicy ginger. The peppermint also adds to this in helping reduce the cough.