7 Natural Expectorants for Curing Bronchitis
Sometimes what you feel is a common case of cold and cough turns out to be bronchitis. Bronchitis is a condition that leaves you coughing for weeks or even more if the correct treatment is not availed in time. Bronchitis is caused when there is an inflammation of the bronchial tubes. These tubes are responsible for carrying air to your lungs. It can cause you to cough persistently, sometimes even making it difficult to breathe. Bronchitis creates a lot of mucus, thus leaving you feeling highly uncomfortable. This persistent coughing may even cause chest pain and wheezing. Many doctors tend to treat bronchitis with antibiotics, though it should be kept in mind that a majority of bronchitis cases are actually caused by viruses, in which case antibiotics become completely ineffective. In place of antibiotics, you can try using some good old safe and natural remedies. These remedies will not only reduce the swelling in your bronchial tubes, but they will also provide relief from a chronic cough.
What is Bronchitis?
Bronchitis happens when the mucus lining of your bronchial tubes become inflamed and full of mucus. The bronchial tubes carry air to your lungs. Bronchitis is a temporary condition and people tend to feel better after about 10 days. However, the persistent cough associated with bronchitis can linger for several weeks. Bronchitis can cause you to cough, wheeze, and even have chest pain due to persistent coughing. You may also feel short of breath. Bronchitis is also known as a chest cold as it generally occurs after you have experienced symptoms of the common cold. As bronchitis generally develops after you have had a bout of cold or the flu, it is typical to also experience cold and flu symptoms along with a chronic cough.
Many doctors prescribe antibiotics to treat bronchitis. However, in most of the cases, bronchitis is caused by a virus and therefore, antibiotics are not effective. There are many natural remedies you can try to treat bronchitis and get relief from the chronic cough. Most of these remedies will be focused on expectorants. An expectorant is something that helps loosen the mucus allowing you to cough it up. Expectorants work by increasing the water content of your mucus, causing it to thin out and making it easier for you to cough it up. Do keep in mind that an expectorant will not treat the underlying infection, but it will help you get a lot of relief and also sleep better. It will make you feel better while your immune system continues to fight out the infection. Many people have often observed that over-the-counter expectorants are not very effective.
7 Natural Expectorants for Curing Bronchitis
These natural expectorants will provide you the much-needed relief you are looking for when suffering from bronchitis.
One of the oldest and often ignored remedies, taking steam is a simple and completely natural method of loosening up congestion. You can opt to take a hot and steamy shower or you can also use fill up a bowl with hot water, drape a towel over your head, and breathe in the steam. Adding some essential oils to the hot water such as peppermint oil or eucalyptus oil will also help. Steam helps provide relief in a chronic cough as it loosens up the mucus in your bronchial tubes or airway.
Drink Mullein Tea
Mullein has been used for respiratory ailments for many years now. It is a traditional folk remedy that works by thinning the mucus and clearing it from your lungs. Mullein tea contains saponins, the main ingredient responsible for loosening phlegm. This tea also contains a gelatinous mucilage, which helps soothe the raw mucus membranes from coughing persistently. To make mullein tea, simply boil a cup of water and mix in two teaspoons of dried mullein leaves. You should let the tea steep for around 10 to 15 minutes and then strain out the soaked leaves. Drink this tea for up to 3 cups a day.
Whenever you are unwell, the best way to heal faster is to remain well hydrated so that your body is able to flush out the toxins quickly. Remaining well hydrated allows your body to function at its best. When you have a chronic cough, it is good to increase your fluid intake. You can drink lukewarm water, herbal teas, warm fruit juices, and other beverages as well. However, try to avoid having caffeine and alcohol, as these will worsen your symptoms. You can continue to have your daily cup of coffee, but only as long as you also drink enough water throughout the day.
Raw honey or honey is a rich source of vitamins, enzymes, and minerals. Raw honey is alkaline-forming and it helps to stabilize the functions of your immune system, and also targets inflammation. When you have a chronic cough, raw honey helps in soothing your sore throat. Honey also helps in loosening up mucus in your chest and gets it moving. Many studies have shown that people suffering from upper respiratory infections found that honey provided relief in a cough and also improves the quality of sleep.
You can consume honey directly or you can also mix a teaspoon of honey in a cup of war milk or tea. You can also mix 3 to 4 teaspoons of raw honey into a glass of warm water and then add half a teaspoon of cinnamon to it. Honey combined with cinnamon is a potent anti-inflammatory remedy that is ideal for not just bronchitis, but allergies and other respiratory disorders as well. You should consume honey 2 to 3 times a day.
Oregano oil is known to be effective and a strong natural antibiotic. Oregano oil is recommended highly as a natural remedy for those seeking relief from bronchitis. Carvacrol, the active ingredient in oregano oil, is known to actively target inflammation and chest congestion. In use for thousands of years, many traditional doctors would recommend the use of oregano extract for treating cough and cold, flu, bronchitis, and sore throats. Oregano oil has both antiviral and antibacterial properties and helps in the treatment of many respiratory disorders, caused by both bacteria and viruses. To use oregano oil for bronchitis, you should dilute it with olive oil. The ratio should be one drop of olive oil to one drop of oregano oil. Using a dropper, you can put just two drops of the mixture under your tongue. Flush with water afterward. Oregano oil can also be found in capsule form and you should ideally take 500 mg doses, up to 4 times a day or as recommended on the label.
Peppermint contains a compound known as menthol which helps thin out mucus and loosens phlegm from your chest and throat. You can easily find peppermint tea in many stores and is considered to be safe for consumption with no side effects. You can also add a couple of fresh peppermint leaves to hot water and brew your own tea.
Peppermint is not dangerous unless you are allergic to it, as allergic reactions to mint are fairly common. Therefore, be careful and watch out for any symptoms of an allergic reaction after you have it for the first time. Better to consume only small amount to the first test if you are allergic to peppermint. A word of advice - pure menthol is considered to be poisonous and should not be ingested.
Not many are aware that the leaf of the Ivy plant (Hedera helix) is an effective expectorant. The presence of saponins in Ivy leaf helps to thin out mucus, allowing you to cough it up easily. According to one research study, a combination of herbs - dry Ivy leaf extract, thyme, marshmallow root, and aniseed - improve a chronic cough. Many other studies have also shown that Ivy leaf is an effective cough treatment. However, the exact mechanism of action is not yet understood.
A chronic cough is one of the biggest problems when you are suffering from the bronchitis. With the use of an expectorant, you will be able to loosen the mucus in your chest and this will help you cough it up easily. Coughing up mucus helps your body feel less congested and you will be able to get some relief while your immune system continues to fight off the infection. The above mentioned natural expectorants will help in curing bronchitis.
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