While it’s associated with conditions and diseases like cold and TB, a cough is also extremely useful to the body of an organism. Generally and scientifically speaking, a cough helps the body to get rid of foreign particles.
Many individuals believe that once you’ve got a cough, you ought to see a doctor for necessary treatments. But they often forget the simple fact that not all coughs are caused by unhealthy conditions or diseases. When an individual’s lungs are infected with allergies such as phlegm, he needs to cough out those allergies from the lungs to help prevent infection. A cough is, therefore, a protective mechanism which aims at defending the body against foreign particles introduced into the lungs and airways.
What are other conditions that warrant a person coughing, possibly having a wet or dry cough? Let’s discuss the conditions and the infections responsible for coughing, we’ll also see some natural remedies.
Causes of Cough
1. Short-term Cough
In some cases, the infection is detected to be in the upper respiratory tract and affects the throat, windpipe, and sinuses. Examples are cold, flu, laryngitis, sinusitisor whooping cough. In other cases, the infection is detected to be in the lower respiratory tract and affects the lungs or the lower airways. Examples are bronchitis and pneumonia.
2. Long-term Cough
This is caused by a long-term respiratory tract infection, such as chronic bronchitis. It could also be caused by smoking, an allergy, and postnasal drip. Gastro-esophagus reflux disease (GORD) also causes a long-term cough. Long-term cough (also known as chronic cough) is caused in children by asthma but it could also be from conditions like GORD. This type of cough could be a symptom of more serious health conditions such as lung cancer, heart failure, or tuberculosis (TB).
Having known the causes, what are some natural remedies for getting rid of cough?
Whether it’s a dry, wet, or whooping cough, all coughs are extremely terrible especially at night or when the individual is not able to breathe properly. You can treat coughs due to allergies and cold with over-the-counter medicines. However, the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK made it known that a homemade remedy with honey and lemon is as good as, if not better than, the over-the-counter (OTC) products.
At this juncture, let us discuss some home remedies for a cough.
The long-term honored remedy, honey is the best remedy for a cough. A study shows that it can relieve a cough more effectively than the over-the-counter products.
Thyme helps in getting rid of a cough and digestive issues quickly because of the antioxidants it contains.
Most people don’t think of pineapple as a remedy for a cough because they’ve never heard of the enzyme it contains. Bromelain is an enzyme found in the stem of pineapple. Because it contains anti-inflammatory and mucolytic properties, it helps in breaking down mucus in the body. But people who take blood thinners or specific antibiotics are advised to not take bromelain.
The leaves and root of this herb are used to treat sore throats and to suppress coughs. The herb contains mucilage, which helps in coating the throat and soothes irritation. The root of the herb can be got in capsule form. It is also recommended for children.
Dietary Changes for Acid Reflux
Acid reflux is a common cause of a cough. To help suppress a cough, an individual must avoid food and beverages that trigger acid reflux. Below is a list of the food and beverages that often trigger acid reflux.
- Fried and fatty foods
Having seen some of the natural remedies to treat a cough, how can you prevent or reduce the risk of coughing? To reduce the risk of coughing,
- Don’t smoke or quit smoking if you’ve been smoking.
- Allow ventilation in your room.
- Work in environments that don’t cause irritations to your airways.
- Keep your immune system healthy by having a healthy diet, regularly exercising the body and getting enough rest.