Cough, Cough – Home Remedies

coughing woman

A constant cough may be very frustrating and in addition, you start worrying about what your cough might mean. Contamination and inflammation of cells lining the respiratory tract leads to coughing.


Mucus secreting cells lining the lung’s air passage produce excess mucus secretion upon infection. The increased mucus secretion causes irritation in the air passage which in turn gives way to coughing. By way of coughing, the excess amount of mucus secreted is released.

Cough may also manifest itself as an allergic reaction to dust, pollen grains and smoking. To define scientifically coughing is a reflexive reaction caused by the stimulation of sensory nerves lining the respiratory tract. The treatment of coughing which may be either dry or phlegm based should ideally aim at curing its original cause; but in addition to the course of treatment, certain natural home based remedies may prove to be effective as well.


Warm Liquids

Drinking warm water is a good way of soothing the inflammation in the throat; but this does not have any taste and may be unappetizing for most people. A warm soup is a much better solution as is a glass of hot herbal tea.

Lemon Tea

Lemon tea with a dash of ginger may prove to be one of the easiest home-based remedies for curing prolonged spells of cough. The medicinal properties of ginger suppress various respiratory ailments like common cough and cold. The tea leaves may be boiled with juice of grated ginger being added to it. Thereafter juice of lime may be added on to it to be sipped piping hot.

Sleep With Head Elevated

For some people, a productive cough results when mucus drips from the back of the nose into the throat. This tends to grow worse at night when the body posture is conducive for such dripping. Sleeping with the head at a higher position helps to reduce such drainage and many people find this position helps reduce coughing at night and improves sleep.

Honey Remedies

Since ages, honey has been known to soothe the irritated throat linings and reduce cough. There are different ways of using honey besides the one mentioned in combination with turmeric. A dry cough responds to a mixture of honey with juice from grapes. A glass of hot milk with some honey added just before going to bed is effective at relieving night time cough. Mix in honey and lemon juice to a glass of warm water and drink this three times per day for relief from cough.

If you have a particularly nasty cough, try this remedy. Take about 3 tablespoons of flaxseeds in 1 cup of water and boil. When the water starts thickening, strain the liquid and mix in 3 tablespoons each of lemon juice and honey. Swallow about 1 tablespoon of this mixture when you experience a severe coughing fit. Honey also works well in combination with betel leaf (paan). Grind a few washed betel leaves and extract the juice; add 1 teaspoon of honey to 2 teaspoons of this juice, mix and consume about half an hour after meals. Repeat for about 5 days to find relief from cough.


ginger tea

Ginger Remedies

For a dry cough, one of the easiest ways of finding relief is to cut a piece of fresh ginger, sprinkle some salt on it and chew on it for a few minutes. However, not everyone likes the strongly aromatic taste of ginger and in such cases, a tea made with ginger is equally good. Chop ginger into fine pieces, add into a vessel containing one cup of water. Keep boiling the liquid till the volume reduces to half the original quantity. Strain the liquid, add one teaspoon of honey and drink when warm to give a soothing effect against cough.

Ginger in combination with tulsi is also an effective remedy for cough. Crush about 10 leaves of tulsi, mix with juice extracted from a small ginger piece. Add in an equal quantity of honey and mix; swallow about a single teaspoon of this about thrice a day to get relief from cough.

People who don’t mind the strong spicy flavor of pepper can also add in some black pepper powder and turmeric into a mixture of ginger juice with honey. When this paste is slowly licked for 10 to 15 minutes thrice a day, it helps reduce congestion in the throat and reduces cough. A simple ginger tea is easy to prepare by boiling ginger with water; then add tea leaves or tea powder, drop in some tulsi leaves and pepper powder, strain and drink for relief from cough.

Turmeric Remedies

A traditional remedy that most people swear by is the use of hot milk with turmeric. According to a study, it is shown to even have antibacterial properties.

Heat a glass of milk, mix in half a teaspoon of turmeric powder and drink warm to find relief from cough. A turmeric gargle also gives good results. To one cup of hot water, add in half a teaspoon of turmeric powder and half a teaspoon table salt. Use this liquid as a throat gargle and you are sure to experience relief from cough.

For a dry cough, turmeric powder mixed with a teaspoon of honey taken three to four times a day is effective. You could also try preparing turmeric tea by adding one tablespoon of turmeric powder into 4 cups of boiling water. Keep for a few minutes, strain and mix in some lemon and honey to the liquid and drink.

Garlic Remedies

Garlic is an effective antimicrobial and expectorant and this makes it a valuable agent to fight cough.

Lightly crush about 5 cloves of peeled garlic and sauté in a teaspoon of ghee; consume when still warm for relief from cough and cold. Include crushed garlic sautéed in ghee in other dishes where possible. Do this with rasam, and you have a medicinal soup that soothes your throat and also helps liquefy the thick mucus, making it easier to cough out the phlegm.


One of the simplest home remedy for cough is to cut onions as the strong vapor of the onion can help in stopping cough. You can make a cough syrup from baked onion juice, comfrey tea and honey and drink it daily to get relief from dry cough. Another home remedy for cough is to add half a teaspoon of onion juice with one teaspoon of pure honey and when this herbal solution is taken at least twice a day, it gives relief from cough and help in soothing your throat.

Other Home Remedies

Two spoons of honey may be added to a glass full of aloe vera juice purchased from a pharmacist. This concoction helps drastically in reducing dry cough.

Inhaling steam will give you a refreshing feeling aiding the release of mucus in the affected passage. Thus it is one of the most scientific processes helping one in the recovery of throat. Inhaling vapor accompanied by sipping the concoction of lime, water and honey will prove to be doubly effective.

Including grapes in your diet also ensures redemption from cough, because the expectorant nature of grapes helps not only in toning the lungs but also activates the release of mucus from the affected parts of respiratory organs. Grape juice with a spoonful of honey will be relieving and effective as well.

Gurgling in salt water always proves to be beneficial in offering relief to an infected or an itchy throat aggravated by coughing. But for an effective change one may resort to gurgling in spinach juice after extracting and warming the same with a dash of salt.

Nutritionally resourceful almonds also play a proactive role in the healing of cough. Paste made out of soaked almonds can be had with a touch of butter for relief from cough.


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