Chronic cough in adults can sometimes be treated with home remedies. Consult your doctor for the home remedies that might be best for you, and talk to your doctor before taking any herbal supplements or natural remedies for chronic cough as some may interact with medications you take.
Stay hydrated. Fluids can help thin secretions.
Gargle with warm saltwater to help cleanse the throat and rid it of mucus.
Elevate your head with extra pillows at night to ease a chronic dry cough.
Inhale steam in a shower, or use a cool-mist humidifier to relieve dry cough.
Cough drops may soothe an irritated throat.
Do not smoke or use tobacco products.
Avoid inhaled irritants such as smoke, dust, or other pollutants.
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Honey often can be an effective treatment for a persistent cough. Add honey to hot tea, or even grape juice.
Ginger, prepared as a tea, is often used to help reduce symptoms of chronic cough and clear the nasal passages.
Other herbs such as eucalyptus or mint are often used to relieve cough symptoms.
. Stay Hydrated
An upper respiratory tract infection like a cold or flu causes postnasal drip. Extra secretions trickle down the back of your throat, irritating it and sometimes causing a cough, Mosnaim says.
Drinking fluids helps to thin out the mucus in postnasal drip, says Kenneth DeVault, MD, professor of medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fla.
Drinking liquids also helps to keep mucous membranes moist. This is particularly helpful in winter, when houses tend to be dry, another cause of cough, he says.
2. Try Lozenges and Hot Drinks
Try a menthol cough drop, Yoder suggests. “It numbs the back of the throat, and that will tend to decrease the cough reflex.”
Drinking warm tea with honey also can soothe the throat. There is some clinical evidence to support this strategy, Yoder says.
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3. Take Steamy Showers, and Use a Humidifier
A hot shower can help a cough by loosening secretions in the nose. Mosnaim says this steamy strategy can help ease coughs not only from colds, but also from allergies.
Humidifiers may also help. In a dry home, nasal secretions (snot) can become dried out and uncomfortable, Mosnaim explains. Putting moisture back in the air can help your cough. But be careful not to overdo it.
“The downside is, if you don’t clean it, (humidifiers) become reservoirs for pumping out fungus and mold into the air, and bacteria,” says Robert Naclerio, MD, chief of otolaryngology at the University of Chicago.