Just like remedies for a sore throat, home treatments for cough work by trial and error. What works for some people doesn’t always work for others and sometimes things that fix one cough one time might not the next.
Warm Water, Honey and Citrus to Quiet a Cough
Honey is an effective cough suppressant, according to the Mayo Clinic. Use a mixture of a glass of warm water, a tablespoon or two of honey and apple cider vinegar, lime juice, lemon juice or anything acidic and tolerable works sometimes to quiet a nagging cough.
Garlic and Coughs
Garlic falls into one of two categories: love or hate.
Whichever side of the fence a person is on, if he can tolerate garlic, he should give it a try for a stubborn cough. Chew a clove or crush up a clove and mix it with warm water and drink. Gargle it. Add a tablespoon of honey to soften the taste.
Onions Quiet Coughs
Garlic’s potent cousin, the onion, is also a favorite home remedy for quieting a nagging cough. Some people have been known to gnaw on an onion like an apple, taking bites and chomping away for cough relief. If that idea isn’t appealing, try this:
- Chop up a white or red onion, about two tablespoons.
- Mix with one cup warm water and allow to steep.
- Add a tablespoon of honey if necessary.
Sip the mixture for a five to 10-minute time period.
Eucalyptus Oil for Coughing
Many people are familiar with the smell of over-the-counter medications that can be rubbed on the chest for comfort and as a coughing remedy. Use eucalyptus oil the same way, mix a drop or two with a little lotion or baby oil and rub on the chest. Place a few drops on a pillow case to inhale while sleeping to help ease coughing.
Gargle to Relieve a Cough
Most people think of gargling for sore throats, but sometimes gargling with a salt water mixture or commercial mouth wash can quiet a cough temporarily and allow a person to get some relief.
Inhale Steam for Colds and Coughs
Neti pots have been used for years to help clear sinus passages. A simple home modified version can be made simply by taking water and boiling it in a pan and carefully inhaling the vapors of steam when the pan is removed from the heat source. Be careful not to get too close to the steam because it can burn. A comfortable distance allows the steam to enter the sinuses as you breathe in through your nose and mouth. Take deep breaths. At first, this may make coughing seem worse but if the problem is related to clogged sinuses or upper respiratory problems, inhaling steam is very helpful.
Persistent coughs usually follow colds and other upper respiratory problems. It is important to have a doctor evaluate a cough to rule out any underlying causes or illnesses. If a cough lasts more than a few days or a week or is accompanied by a fever, it’s important to check with a health care provider to determine the cause.