When somebody in the family is sick, this is an unplanned expense that eats away at your monthly budget. A simple cough or cold, when not treated immediately, can cause bigger problems later on. Fortunately, there are easy home remedies for cough and cold that you can try.
1. Drink Up!
The advise to drink 6-8 glasses of water daily is even more important when you have a cough or cold. Keeping yourself hydrated helps to keep your throat moist and prevent you suffering from a dry coughing fit.
A good tip to keep in mind is to drink warm water. Not only will it soothe your throat; it will also help reduce bacteria or virus in your throat that may be causing the infection.
You can drink other liquids aside from just plain water. Herbal teas and warm, clear soup are great alternatives for soothing cough and cold.
For example, you can start your morning by blending a cup of warm water with the juice of half a lemon and a pinch of cayenne pepper. Stir and sip before your breakfast to help soothe your throat, loosen up your clogged nose and lessen inflammation.
2. Go Steamy
Go steamy when you have a cough or cold. Slowly breath in the steam from your hot drink to decongest your nose. This helps you ease your stuffy nose and even clear up a headache. You can easily do this with a cup of plain, hot water.
You can destress as you inhale some steam by mixing some of your favorite aromatherapy oils into a cup of hot water. Try putting in a few drops of lavender for a calming effect. Use peppermint or eucalyptus oil for a cooling effect that can also decongest your clogged nose.
3. Spice Up Your Food
Spices have many benefits when used individually and in combination. Aside from adding them to food, you can add spices to your drinks to enjoy their benefits.
For example, if you are a fan of hot coffee or hot chocolate in the morning, try adding in some cinnamon powder, turmeric powder and cayenne pepper powder to your brew. Add coconut sugar, muscovado sugar or honey to balance the taste. All these spices help to warm your body, prevent inflammation and help you detoxify.
You can also add these spices to your soups along with other beneficial spices such as garlic, oregano, thyme, rosemary and ginger.
4. Make Your Own Cough Syrup
Hate the taste of cough syrup? Cough syrups are quite expensive, and as most kids will tell you, they taste awful. Save some cash and create your own cough syrup at home.
With natural sweeteners like honey, coconut sugar or muscovado sugar, it will taste better, will be as effective, if not, more effective and costs a lot cheaper than the one that comes in a bottle.
Try out a combination of honey or sugar alternative and lemon with coconut oil or blend together crushed oregano leaves, lemon juice and honey or sugar alternative in warm water to get relief from your cough and cold. You can also add sliced ginger for more benefits.
Most of these ingredients are already available in your own kitchen or readily available in your local market or grocery stores. If you find that lemons are hard to find or a bit on the expensive side, you can always use calamansi instead.
5. Use a Neti Pot
Nasal decongestants are quite expensive. Try using a neti pot. If you haven’t heard of this before, it is highly recommended for decongesting your nasal passages and alleviating the effects of seasonal allergens such as pollens, which causes rhinitis.
The neti pot is a pot, plastic or ceramic, shaped like Aladdin’s lamp or rounder. There are many options available, including some that look like an elephant’s trunk. The best one must have a snout that’s small enough to comfortably fit inside your nostril.
To use a neti pot, pour in lukewarm water into the pot, add in a pinch of salt and stir to mix. Make sure the salt crystals are completely dissolved. You are basically making saline water.
Next, position yourself over the sink. Put your face forward and tilt your head to the side. Place the spout of the neti pot on your upturned nostril and slowly pour in the water which will pour out from your other nostril.
The first time you do this, you might feel like you’re drowning. Don’t panic. Just pour the water slowly until the pot is empty and repeat the same procedure on your other nostril.
The saline water mixture and the pouring action is what is called nasal irrigation. This helps to clean your nasal passages of allergens that may be stuck on your nasal walls and won’t be easy to clean out with tissue or cotton buds.
Be sure to use lukewarm water because cold water might give you a headache instead of relief from your nasal congestion.
Stay Cough and Cold-Free
Hopefully, these easy home remedies for cough and cold can help you get back on your feet as soon as possible. Remember that prevention is still better than cure. So be sure to get enough sleep, put in some exercise, have time to bask in the sunshine every morning and maintain healthy, eating habits to ensure that you do not get sick.
Observe wellness habits regularly so if you do get sick, you will be able to heal yourself much faster which also means less expenses for medicine and less sick days from work.
Updated. First published in Pinoy Smart Living 11.19.2018
Feature Image: Original Image by falconp4 from Pixabay