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  • Writer's pictureDr. Karuturi Subrahmanyam

Cough - Natural Home Remedies

Coughing is a natural reflex that helps clear your airways of mucus, dust, and other irritants. However, if you have a persistent or severe cough, it can be annoying and uncomfortable. You may want to try some natural home remedies to soothe your throat and ease your cough. Here are some of the best natural cough remedies and prevention tips.


Honey is a sweet and soothing remedy for a sore throat. It may also help suppress your cough more effectively than some over-the-counter medications. Honey has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that can help fight infections and reduce inflammation in your throat. You can take a spoonful of honey or add it to a hot drink, such as herbal tea or warm water with lemon.


Ginger is a spicy root that has anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties. It may help ease a dry or asthmatic cough by relaxing the muscles that tighten your airways. It may also help with nausea and congestion. You can eat ginger raw, or you can mix ground ginger root with honey and stir into hot tea.


Garlic is another pungent root that has antibacterial and antiviral properties. It may help fight infections that cause coughs and boost your immune system. You can boil a clove of garlic with milk and then add a pinch of turmeric to it. This drink may help heal and soothe your throat. You can also use ginger instead of garlic, both work equally well.

Saltwater Gargle

Saltwater gargle is a simple and effective way to relieve a sore throat and reduce mucus in your throat. Saltwater can help kill bacteria and viruses that cause infections and inflammation. To make a saltwater gargle, dissolve half a teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water. Gargle with the solution for a few seconds and spit it out. Repeat several times a day.


Steam can help moisten your airways and loosen the mucus in your chest and throat. Steam can also help reduce irritation and inflammation in your respiratory tract. You can inhale steam from a hot shower, a humidifier, or a bowl of hot water with a towel over your head. You can also add some essential oils, such as eucalyptus, peppermint, or lavender, to the water for extra benefits.


Turmeric is a yellow spice that has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It may help reduce coughing by soothing your throat and lungs. Turmeric contains curcumin, which can help fight infections and boost your immune system. You can add turmeric to your food, or you can make a turmeric milk by adding a teaspoon of turmeric powder to a glass of warm milk. Drink this before bedtime for best results.

Prevention Tips

To prevent coughs, you should also take care of your overall health and hygiene. Here are some tips to follow:

  • Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated and thin the mucus in your throat.

  • Avoid exposure to allergens and irritants, such as smoke, dust, pollen, and pet hair.

  • Avoid smoking or vaping, as they can damage your lungs and worsen your cough.

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water or use an alcohol-based sanitizer to prevent the spread of germs.

  • Eat a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats.

  • Get enough sleep and rest to help your body recover from infections.

  • Exercise regularly to improve your blood circulation and lung function.

  • Manage stress levels by practicing relaxation techniques, such as meditation, yoga, or deep breathing.

When to See a Doctor

While most coughs are harmless and go away on their own, some coughs may be signs of more serious conditions. You should see a doctor if you notice any of the following symptoms:

  • Cough lasts for more than three weeks or is recurrent

  • Cough is particularly severe or is getting worse

  • Unexplained weight loss, a persistent change in voice, or lumps or swellings in the neck

  • Worsening leg swelling and shortness of breath, especially when lying flat

  • Cough after being exposed to someone with tuberculosis or whooping cough

  • Severe difficulty breathing

  • Swollen face and hives

  • Severe chest pain

  • Blood in sputum

  • Choking

  • Inability to speak

  • Difficulty swallowing

  • Persistent night sweats

Your doctor may examine you, ask you about your medical history and symptoms, and order some tests to diagnose the cause of your cough. Depending on the diagnosis, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics, bronchodilators, steroids, antihistamines, or other medications to treat your cough.


Coughing is a common and natural reflex that helps clear your airways. However, if you have a persistent or severe cough, you may want to try some natural home remedies to soothe your throat and ease your cough. Some of the best natural cough remedies include honey, ginger, garlic, saltwater gargle, steam, and turmeric. You should also follow some prevention tips to avoid getting sick and keep your lungs healthy. If your cough does not improve or you have any serious symptoms, you should see a doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment.

Dr. Karuturi Subrahmanyam, MD, FRCP (London), FACP (USA)

Internal Medicine Specialist

Kify Hospital



Phone : 85000 23456

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