Also called a productive cough, a dry cough cannot remove irritants, mucus, or phlegm from your nasal passage or lungs, unlike wet cough.
It can linger for weeks. It can be caused by a number of conditions including asthma, postnasal drip, and GERD or acid reflux. It can also be caused by long exposure to toxins and smoking.
How To Treat A Dry Cough At Home- All You Need To Know
Dry cough can be extremely uncomfortable and can happen to both adults and children. There are a number of treatments that you can do on your own to alleviate the effects of dry cough. If you want to skip an appointment with a doctor and do it on your own, consider the following solutions.
Cough suppressants and expectorants
There are two types of over-the-counter medications available for cough, cough expectorants, and cough suppressants.
Antitussives or cough suppressants block the cough reflex to end it. This can alleviate a dry cough that keeps you irritated and awake all night. Expectorants are for wet cough.
These treat sinuses and congestion in the nose. When you catch a cold or any virus, your nose’s linings swell and block the air passage. Decongestants constrict the nose’s blood vessels, which restricts blood flow to the affected tissue.
It becomes easier to breathe as the swelling subsides. However, they are not recommended for children below the age of 12 years because their dangers in side-effects are too high for them. If they are administered to children below two, it can have adverse effects like rapid heart rate and seizures.
As some treatments are not recommended for children and babies, there are also a number of home remedies you can try.
Honey can be used to treat coughing caused during the day and night time. It can be given to adults as well as children above one year. Honey carries antibacterial properties and helps in easing up irritation.
A study conducted in 2007 found that honey was even more advantageous than dextromethorphan.
Take a teaspoon of honey several times a day by mixing it with warm water or tea. There is a rare condition that can occur in children below one year called infant botulism, therefore never give honey to them.
Ginger has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It has been proved that ginger can relieve discomfort and pain and boost our immune system.
Choose teas with ginger as an ingredient. You can also make ginger tea using ginger root. You can add honey to this mixture for more benefits.
You can also chew ginger root or take ginger capsules.
Turmeric contains a compound that has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antiviral properties called curcumin. It has been proven to be beneficial for many conditions like a dry cough.
If you want curcumin to be better absorbed in your blood, it is best to take it with black pepper. Make a beverage with 1 teaspoon of turmeric and add a little amount of black pepper to it. You can also prepare it for tea.
For centuries, turmeric has been used for treating bronchitis, asthma in many respiratory conditions under Ayurveda.
It contains menthol. Menthol helps in easing irritating the throat’s numb nerve endings. This reduces the urge to cough and provides relief.
Studies have found that peppermint carries antiviral and antibacterial properties. It also reduces congestion.
You can suck on peppermint lozenges or drink peppermint tea. To help in nighttime coughs, drink peppermint tea before going to bed.
India has used masala chai for centuries to treat dry cough and sore throats. Its taste is becoming extremely popular in the United States.
It contains a variety of antioxidant ingredients like cardamom and cloves. Cloves are also used as an expectorant. Cinnamon has anti-inflammatory properties and can be added to chai.
Use a humidifier
Dry cough can be aggravated by dry air. Using a humidifier will moist the air, providing relief. A humidifier can help you open up your sinus.
If you want to ease nighttime coughing, use a humidifier in your bedroom at night.
Dry coughs are common and can linger for several weeks. But if they are experienced with other symptoms like back pain, chest pain, wheezing, chills, and fever it is important to consult a doctor rather than treating it on your own.
Consult your physician if your cough doesn’t go away completely even after two months.