In his book, ‘Solve it with Supplements’, author Robert Schulman states that coughing is the process by which the body clears the airways. Coughing is also helpful in clearing mucus from the airways. This mucus often becomes lodged there as a result of bacterial or viral infections. When this mucus lodges itself in the airways and in the lungs, it becomes very difficult for the affected person to breathe freely.
Such people are often unable to get sleep at night due to the constant problem of coughing. Coughing often exerts a great deal of pressure on the lungs and this can even give rise to the symptom of pain in the chest and throat areas. Coughs can be treated with the help of a wide range of herbs. Given below are some of these effective herbs.
Herbs for Cough
The University of Maryland Medical Center states that thyme is an herb that has been used extensively for treating coughs as well as bronchitis. The Herb Growing and Marketing Network states that thymol is an active ingredient present in this herb and is present in cough drops, pharmaceutical gargles and vaporubs. Thymol is considered effective in destroying bacteria and other fungal infections as well.
The Herb Growing and Marketing Network states that Mullein is an herb that has been used traditionally to treat several lung conditions such as asthma, whooping cough, colds and bronchitis. The University of Maryland Medical Center states that this herb plays the role of an expectorant and helps to get rid of the mucus from the lungs.
Eucalyptus is an herb that is considered effective in treating respiratory conditions such as cough and cold, and is available in the form of lozenges, cough syrups and over the counter medications. The University of Maryland Medical Center states that this herb, when applied in the form of an ointment to the skin, is effective in reducing congestion and loosening the phlegm.
You can also take steam inhalation and add some eucalyptus to it. Inhaling the steam will help in breaking up the mucus and will destroy any bacteria that might be present in the lungs. To take steam inhalation using eucalyptus, add around 20-40 drops of eucalyptus oil to three quarts of boiling water and inhale the steam for at least 20 minutes.
According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, peppermint is known to possess menthol, which is an active ingredient that exhibits the properties of a decongestant. Menthol is considered beneficial in loosening the phlegm present in the lungs and enables the phlegm to come out easily. Menthol is also helpful in soothing sore throat, thereby helping in treating dry cough. You can consume peppermint in the form of tea, lozenges or tinctures.
The Natural Health Encyclopaedia of Herbal Medicine states that this herb is effective in dealing with respiratory conditions such as bronchitis as it is helpful in destroying bacteria and viruses. It is also considered effective in boosting immunity, which helps in the prevention of coughs and colds. The root of this herb is used for medicinal purposes. You can consume this herb in the form of a health supplement or as tea. This herb is generally safe to consume regularly; however, it is recommended that you consult your physician regarding long-term side effects as well as possible drug interactions.
Marshmallow is considered an effective herbal remedy for treating cough and sore throat. It is known to coat the lining of your throat and reduce irritation. For best results, it is highly recommended that you consume this herb along with adequate amounts of water. In the 1992 edition of the journal ‘Pharmazie’, it was stated that this herb exhibits antitussive properties that may prove beneficial in dealing with the symptoms of cough.
The University of Maryland Medical Center states that ginger is an herb that has been used extensively in the treatment of a host of health ailments such as headaches, vomiting, cough, cold, motion sickness and flu. Ginger is an herb that is used extensively in cooking, especially in Indian cuisine. MedlinePlus states that ginger possesses certain chemicals that are helpful in reducing inflammation as well as nausea.
Ginger has been used traditionally to treat cough and cold as it has a soothing effect on the lining of the throat. RxMed.com states that this herb is effective in treating cough and cold as it possesses antioxidants and oleoresin. Oleoresin is an active ingredient present in this herb that exhibits antitussive properties, which means that this herb is capable of relieving as well as suppressing coughs.
The University of Maryland Medical Center states that you should use steam inhalation to treat cough by adding one or two drops of ginger oil in boiling water and inhaling the vapours. You can also consume this herb as a tea by using some honey as well as lemon in the preparation. To prepare the tea, boil some water along with a small piece of ginger and the juice of half lemon. After the tea comes to a boil, add a teaspoon of honey to it and drink it after it cools.
Hyssop is an herb that is considered an expectorant and is very helpful in treating cough. This herb is helpful in reducing the accumulation of phlegm from the lungs, thereby treating cough. For best results, use hyssop in the form of a tea and add honey to it. This herb also exhibits antiviral properties that help in treating as well as preventing cough.
In the book ‘Bottom Line’s Prescription for Natural Cures’, authors James Balch and Mark Stengler states that this herb is useful in treating a wet cough. According to ‘Desk Reference of Nature’s Medicine’, goldenseal is an herb that is helpful in boosting immunity, as it possesses antiseptic and antimicrobial properties. This herb is also known to possess berberine, which is an active ingredient that helps in killing bacteria. This herb also exhibits anti-inflammatory properties and helps in drying up mucus.