When a sore throat hits, it can feel like an intrusion on your day-to-day activities. The constant pain and discomfort are often enough to leave you drained and low on energy.
Let’s face it—when you’re feeling crummy, the last thing you want to do is venture outside. So, before you rush to the nearest pharmacy, here are ten tricks to soothe a sore throat naturally at home.
One age-old remedy for a sore throat is a warm concoction of honey and lemon in water. The soothing qualities of honey and the astringent properties of lemon make a comforting drink that reduces inflammation and lubricates your throat.
Honey has an antibacterial effect, which can help fight off any potential infection causing your sore throat. It also acts as a natural cough suppressant, providing temporary relief from coughing fits. Lemon contains high levels of vitamin C, which supports the immune system and promotes healing.
Hydration is key when you're nursing a sore throat. It's important to drink plenty of fluids to keep your breathing passage moist and to speed up the healing process. Herbal teas can provide additional soothing relief.
Some herbal teas and their benefits include chamomile tea, which has anti-inflammatory properties to reduce pain and inflammation; licorice root tea, which soothes the throat and has anti-viral properties; and ginger tea, which boosts the immune system and provides relief from throat discomfort.
Your grandmother was right—a bowl of hot chicken soup can provide relief from a sore throat. Not only is it a comforting and familiar (dare we say, nostalgic?) remedy, but it also offers several benefits for soothing your throat.
The warm broth helps to keep you hydrated, which is essential for alleviating a sore throat as it helps thin mucus and reduce irritation in the throat. The warmth of the soup can also help soothe the inflammation in your throat, providing temporary relief from pain and discomfort.
Gargling with warm salt water can be an effective way to soothe a sore throat. This simple remedy has been used for generations to alleviate pain and discomfort. The salt in the water acts as a natural disinfectant, drawing out excess water from the inflamed tissues in your throat and reducing swelling.
While you might think whispering can protect your sore throat, it can actually cause more strain. Similarly, yelling or loud talking can further irritate an already inflamed throat. Resting your voice as much as possible is crucial for allowing your throat to heal.
To promote the healing of your sore throat, it’s important to steer clear of irritants that can worsen your symptoms. Smoke, whether from cigarettes or other sources, is a good example. Strong perfumes and chemical fumes can also trigger discomfort and prolong your recovery.
If you’re a smoker, consider this as an opportune time to take a break from smoking or even quit altogether. Besides irritating your throat, smoking weakens your immune system, making it harder for your body to fight infections and heal itself.
While it may sound strange, some people find relief from a sore throat by eating marshmallows. The gelatin in marshmallows could coat the throat, providing temporary relief from pain and discomfort.
Dry air can worsen your sore throat. Using a humidifier in your home can help keep your throat moist and lessen irritation. This can be especially helpful during dry winter months.
Place a humidifier in the rooms where you spend the most time, such as your bedroom, office, or living room. Ensure it’s clean and properly maintained to prevent the growth of mold or bacteria. By keeping the air moist, you’ll create a more comfortable environment for your throat, allowing it to heal more effectively.
Sucking on a throat lozenge or hard candy can stimulate saliva production, which keeps your throat lubricated and reduces discomfort. Opt for sugar-free varieties to protect your teeth. Look for options that contain ingredients like honey, lemon, or herbal extracts for added soothing properties.
Last, but certainly not least, drink plenty of fluids. We've already mentioned it a few times: hydration is key to recovery from any illness, and it’s especially important when dealing with a sore throat. Water helps lubricate your throat and wash away any irritants.
In addition to water, you can also enjoy other hydrating beverages we’ve discussed, like herbal teas, warm broths, or clear soups. Avoid beverages that can dehydrate your body, such as caffeinated or sugary drinks.
Often overlooked, fenugreek is a kitchen spice with potent anti-inflammatory benefits. In fact, you can create a therapeutic tea that alleviates throat discomfort by boiling fenugreek seeds in water. The natural properties of fenugreek help reduce pain and irritation, making it a great holistic remedy. The next time you're rummaging through your spice rack, remember that fenugreek is more than just a flavor enhancer — it's a healing agent in disguise!
Slippery elm, a native North American tree, has been celebrated for its medicinal properties for centuries. When combined with water, it produces a gel-like substance that envelops the throat, offering immediate relief. That's because its natural coat acts as a barrier, reducing irritation and discomfort. Whether you choose slippery elm lozenges or teas, this natural remedy is a testament to the healing power of nature.
Garlic's reputation extends beyond the culinary world. This pungent bulb is a natural antibiotic, so chewing on a raw garlic clove can help neutralize throat-aggravating germs. Raw garlic might be a bit intense for some, so adding minced garlic to warm broths or soups can be a more palatable alternative.
While it might seem counterproductive, cayenne pepper can be a surprising ally in the fight against throat pain. The capsaicin in cayenne is a natural pain reliever, numbing the throat and reducing discomfort. Try gargling a mix of cayenne and warm water for pain relief. However, moderation is key. You want to soothe your throat, not set it ablaze!
Dry air can be a sore throat's worst enemy. So adding moisture to the throat through steam can offer instant relief. Whether you have a hot, steamy shower or use a facial steamer, warm vapors can moisten and soothe the lining of your irritated throat. It's a simple remedy, but the relief it provides is immediate.