How to Find Relief from a Persistent Cough
Coughs can be incredibly annoying to both the cougher and those around them. A persistent cough is even worse. Dealing with a cough can interupt your day, as you hack until your throat hurts. If you’re suffering from a persistent or frustrating cough, there are plenty of home remedies that can soothe a tickly throat and give you back the rest of your day!
Find the Cause
Probably the most important thing you can do to stop yourself from coughing is to identify the root cause. Anything else is treating the symptoms. In some cases, though, there’s an underlying cause of your cough that needs to be solved before your cough can go away for good. Common illnesses where coughing is a symptom are the common cold, or more seriously, the flu. Frequent heartburn or GERD can also lead to fits of coughing. Basically, any illness or allergy that causes irritation to the throat or a buildup of phlegm can bring on coughing.
If you have a cough paired with other symptoms, or that won’t go away with these other solutions, a trip to your doctor may be worth it. Your primary care physician will be able to prescribe medication or direct you toward ways to relieve your specific cause of coughing.
Take a Steamy Shower
If you’re cough just won’t go away, finding relief may be as easy as taking a relaxing, hot shower. While the soothing shower may feel nice, it’s actually the warm steam that’ll help your cough the most. Steam has the dual benefits of easing the irritation while loosening mucus that causes the irritation. This makes your coughs more productive, removing the mucus or phlegm and allowing you to breath normally.
Alternatively, you can make a steam bowl, which is simple, but effective. All you need to do is boil some water and pour it into a bowl. Next, cover your head with a towel and lean over the bowl while breathing in the steam. A third option is to pick up a humidifier. These may help thin out the mucus, but make sure to clean them out occasionally. Over time, humidifiers may pick up bacteria or fungus, which get sent into the air through the steam. Also, whether you’re using steam from a shower, steam bowl, or humidifier, it’s important to hydrate, since the hot steam can dehydrate you and actually make the cough worse.
Honey has long been a home remedy for sore throats and coughs. While some old wives’ tales have little basis in fact, studies show that honey can actually suppress a cough and may be as effective than over-the-counter medicines! Even as little as one and a half teaspoons may be enough to help with your cough.
So, how does it work? Well, the answer is threefold. First, honey can soothe the back of the throat, relieving the irritation. Honey can also help break up the mucus causing the irritation. Finally, it’s rich in antioxidants and antimicrobials, which may help the body fight off the cause of the cough.
So, you’ve been coughing all day, and you’re tired of it. One way you can find relief is with a marshmallow remedy. Sadly, no, not that kind of marshmallow! Marshmallow root is made from a flower that can be brewed into a tea, used as an extract, or turned into a syrup. Marshmallow has been used to salve sore throats and coughs for over 2,000 years. Science now backs up this age-old belief that marshmallow can help stop coughs in their tracks.
The way marshmallow helps is by coating your throat, which protects it from irritation. It’s also very anti-inflammatory, which soothes the mucus membranes in the throat, further relieving irritation. You can brew marshmallow into a tea, use it in a syrup, or take marshmallow capsules. See, marshmallows are good for your health!
Many people enjoy a caffeine-free tea to relax before bed, but if you’ve got a cough, the tea may still be a good idea to help you sleep. Tea acts much the same as steam, in that it loosens the mucus that may be causing the cough, but with the added benefit of hydrating your body. At the same time, different teas are rich in antioxidants, as well as anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, which can fight many of the causes of coughing. This is very similar to the way that chicken noodle soup can help fight a cold.
The final added benefit of drinking tea is that you can mix many other ingredients that can help fight a cough. Honey is a regular addition to teas as a sweetener and, as we mentioned earlier, incredibly effective at suppressing a cough. With all these benefits, tea really seems to be the ultimate cough-fighter!
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A bad cough can ruin your day and keep you up at night, leaving you exhausted and frustrated. Don’t let coughing be a hindrance anymore! By finding out the cause of your cough and soothing the symptoms, you can get back to enjoying your day and sleeping through the night!