13 Home Remedies for Dry Cough (Your Grandmother's Favourites!)
The season for allergies is here again. The dry wind of autumn and the changing season often brings with it a dry hacking cough that can be irritating and painful.
The cough is a way for your body to expel allergens, but sometimes that dry cough can be an impending disaster. It may just be the symptom that points at a larger issue like chronic lung disease.
There are small things we can do at home to try and reduce or stop dry coughing at home, but if the cough persists it is always a good idea to consult a doctor to rule out the underlying problem.
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A Dry Cough that is More Virulent at Night Needs Some Smart Solutions (Home Remedies for Dry Cough at Night!)
Most people suffer severe coughing at night. At times, you might not be able to sleep properly, as you can't stop coughing at night. The idea of using natural remedies to resolve a cough is good but the trick is to use good quality ingredients and brands and use them optimally.
It is also important that you should be aware of the medications & their interactions with any regular medicines you take.
Here's How To Get Rid of Cough!
#1. Using a Humidifier
Dry coughs are often due to dry weather conditions, so a humidifier may relieve some symptoms. Inhaling steam with a couple of drops of essential oils like wintergreen, rosemary, eucalyptus or tea tree oil may help decongest and clean airways and relieve persistent coughs. A hot steam filled shower may be helpful too. It will also reduce the stiffness caused due to continuous hacking cough.
#2. Drinking Hot Beverages & Stay Hydrated
Drinking hot beverages and staying hydrated is the next best thing you can do to help yourself overcome the effects of a dry cough.
Herbal teas, soups, tisanes, black tea, warm fruit juices, and even hot water can help with reducing symptoms of a dry cough. Studies show that adequate hydration not only helps with a dry cough but also relieves a runny nose and sneezing. Chicken soup has been known to be one of the most effective cold and cough fighters since ancient times across the world.
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#3. Using Immune Boosting Anti-Oxidants (Honey & Lemon)
Honey is a known antioxidant and has demonstrated a good response to reducing coughing spells. The best way is to add 2 teaspoons of honey to warm water and drink this tea twice a day. You can add the goodness of lemon juice to add a Vitamin C boost, a known cold, and cough alleviator. Even taking a teaspoon of raw dark honey helps in coating a sore throat and relieves coughs. It is not recommended to give honey to small infants below the age of one.
#4. Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Ginger
Ginger is a herb which has a known history of helping in curing coughs and colds. Persistent coughing can cause nausea and pain. Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties and a dash of ginger in a tea, or as a juice mixed with honey can work wonders on a dry and non-asthmatic cough. 20 to 30 grams of crushed ginger root steeped in a cup of hot water mixed with dark honey and /or lemon juice is ideal.
#5. Marshmallows for Relief from Sore Throat
Marshmallow root extracts contain a huge amount of Mucilage. This is a thick gluey cough syrup that along with added thyme and ivy extracts can be a very effective remedy for sore throats and dry cough. Marshmallow root tea bags are also freely available and you can steep them in hot water to make a soothing tea that gives you night time relief from a dry cough. You should refrain from using it if you are pregnant or have diabetes.
#6. Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Pomegranate
The peel of the pomegranate also has anti-inflammatory properties and when steeped in hot water can form an effective cough syrup.
#7. Getting Bromelain from Pineapple Juice
Bromelain is another enzyme that is mucolytic and anti-inflammatory. Bromelain is found extensively in pineapple, especially in the hard core of the fruit. The mucolytic properties ensure that the mucous is broken up and expelled from the body. This ensures that there is a great relief from a dry cough. Many naturalists recommend that cough and cold prone people drink a glass of pineapple juice every day. Do ensure that you are not allergic to Bromelain. Pregnant women should also avoid Bromelain.
#8. Using Thyme (The Herb with High Antioxidant Content)
Thyme is a herb we associate with food, but few are aware that it is also a herb that reduces symptoms of bronchitis, dry cough, and digestive issues. Thyme and ivy steeped together are very effective as a dry cough remedy. The high antioxidant content in the herb may be the reason that it relieves an itchy throat immediately.
#9. Find the Trigger for Acid Reflux & Avoid It!
If your dry cough has been around for a long time you may check with your doctor to check whether it is a case of acid reflux. If it is so, do get the required treatment. Along with medicine, there are a few foods that can reduce acid Reflux symptoms and hence dry cough too. Acid refluxes can have different triggers for different people. It could be alcohol for one person, caffeine for another. Chocolate, citrus fruits, fried and high-fat content foods, mint, spicy foods, tomatoes, and even garlic and onions can be the culprit for the condition too! It is wise to identify the trigger that causes the distress and avoid the same. The reduction in reflux will give you long-lasting relief as the root cause of the problem is eliminated.
#10. Using the Magical Turmeric Milk
Let us not forget the good old “Haldi Doodh” that has been renamed Turmeric latte very famously. The golden spice is rich in Curcumin that is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent. The golden milk can be spiked with a few drops of clarified butter or ghee and consumed hot just before bed for best results.
#11. Using Jaggery (Sweet Treatment to Soothe Dry Cough)
Jaggery is also known to soothe a dry cough and the sweet treat can be had as a part of a ghee laden halwa or in milk to help loosen the mucus that in turn soothes a dry cough and a sore throat.
#12. Onion Juice (A Grandmother’s True Home Remedy)
Some grandmothers swear by onion juice as a remedy for a dry cough. A teaspoon twice a day can help relieve an achy throat and reduce coughing considerably.
#13. Doing Warm Water Gargle
A warm salt water gargle is very soothing when you have a dry cough but very few people know that it can be an effective way to avoid a cold too. The cleansing gargle can eliminate pollutants and allergens from our airways and keep mucous membranes well hydrated. A gargle twice a day can keep us healthy.
There are many tried and tested recipes that can effectively reduce a dry cough and help you sleep. The refreshing sleep makes you feel better automatically. The key is to avoid catching the cold altogether.
It is important to stay hydrated and eat well to keep our immune system healthy. We should avoid places that have people with colds, wash our hands when we reach home or work, keep general hygiene.
If you are so inclined there are a few Yoga tips like practicing “Neti” or nasal irrigation and some Asanas that can keep you away from the common cold. After all, it is the ubiquitous common cold that even modern medicine has not been able to find a cure for. Avoid the cold and keep the cough away.
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