Home Remedies for Cough: Natural and OTC treatments for Adults and Babies

Home Remedies for Cough: Natural and OTC treatments for Adults and Babies

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Having a persistent cough that lasts longer than a few weeks is so troublesome. And worse than this, sustained coughing can be a system of many conditions. So today, we would like to tell you the best home remedies for a cough, especially if you prefer to avoid using chemicals a lot. These natural hacks can help your throat clear from the irritants and phlegm.

What to know about coughs?

Coughing - Home remedies for cough

Before learning the best home remedies for cough for quick relief, let’s get to know more about these coughs!

Coughing is one of the most popular health problems, and also known as the “Tussis,” which is a voluntary or involuntary action. It would help clear your throat and breathing passage of every foreign particle, irritant, microbe, mucus, and fluid. In other words, it’s considered the rapid expulsion of air from your lungs. Coughing can signify cold, nasal congestion or a runny nose, etc.[1]

What causes coughs?

Getting a cough is meant to guard you because it can get rid of stuff that doesn’t belong to your lungs or windpipe, including food or dirt. Then what are the most common triggers? Here they are:  

For causes, it’s the viral infection, smoking, cold or flu, or other allergies, asthma, or when you use other medicines that have the side effects.


In this case, getting colds and flu would be the two most common reasons that lead to your coughing act. While so irritating, these types of coughs are considered as “productive” when successfully getting the mucus out of the lungs once you get sick. And most of them would be gone within a few days.

After having a cold, even though, a few “dry” coughs can last weeks and months. It gets caused when the lungs are irritated, and then this causes you to have more coughing. Next, your lungs are annoyed and so on.

Allergies and asthma

Once you suffer from them, especially when inhaling a trigger like a mold, for instance, it would lead your lungs to overreact. They try to cough out what’s troubling them at that time.

Besides, this is a common cause in young kids, and such asthmatic coughing tends to involve your wheezing, which makes it easier for us to verify. Any asthma exacerbation needs to get enough treatment using the inhaler. It’s possible for kids to grow out of the condition as they turn older.  


Even though you’re allergic, some stuff like cold air, cigarette smoke, or intense perfumes, can set a spell off.  


A few of medications will trigger coughing, even though this is usually a rare side effect. Besides, the (ACE) inhibitors are commonly availed to cure your high blood pressure and other heart conditions. Two of the more popular brands you need to take into consideration is Vasotec (enalapril) and Zestril (Lisinopril). And know what? Your coughing will pause once the medication paused.

Postnasal drip

When you get congested, the mucus drops down from the nose into the throat, and cause you to cough hard. You’re able to experience the postnasal drip from flu, sinus infections, colds, allergies, and other issues.


This is another common reason why you keep coughing. Besides, a cough triggered by your smoking act is nearly often a chronic cough with a highly distinctive sound. It’s always known as the smoker’s cough. And the cough here can be distinguished from other kinds of a cough by some signs, including the crackling sounds in your chest, wheezing, phlegm production, and so on.

Clearing your throat

Your cough is supposed to be a standard method of clearing the throat. And as the airway turns into being clogged with mucus or other outside particles like smoke or dust for instances, then an average cough is seen as the reflex reaction that tries to clear out those particles. Doing so can help make your whole breathing experiences much more comfortable than usual.

For a clearer picture about the causes of a recurring cough, watch this video:

Other possible conditions

There are a few conditions that might lead to a cough, including:

  • High damage to the overall vocal cords
  • Bacterial infections, like a whooping cough, croup, and pneumonia
  • Severe conditions, consisting of the pulmonary embolism and heart issues.

You can use some home remedies for a cough, but you must know that the most common condition that is more likely to cause your chronic cough is the GERD – Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease. In this case, belly contents can flow back into the esophagus. The backflow drives the reflex in the trachea, leading your person to cough.  

As always, this kind of coughing is quite not regular, but your coughing experience can raise up when being exposed to some certain irritants, like smoke for instance.

Common symptoms of coughs

If you experience a chronic cough, it gets accompanied by some other cold symptoms, and here they are:

  • A sore throat
  • Postnasal drip
  • Stuffy nose or a runny nose
  • Hoarseness
  • Heartburn
  • A bad taste in your mouth
  • Phlegm

Consult a doctor instantly if you suffer a chronic cough and have any of these following severe symptoms:

  • Wheezing or hard breathing
  • High temperature
  • Chest pain
  • Coughing up blood, yellow, or green phlegm
  • Coughing hard, making you vomit a lot
  • You experience a cough with unexpected weight loss

For specific symptoms and treatment, don’t skip the VIDEO as below:

What happens if you can’t treat it?

You can use some home remedies for cough, but some of these can be not so easy to deal. And the cough could be quite long lasting and not responsive to the entire treatment, or probably cause some complications. And such difficulties could impact severely on your daily life than you expect: Fatigue, dizziness, fractured ribs, headaches.

Aside from those, there are more complications that you might not expect to happen, such as:


Non-stop coughing that owns a specific effect on the overall muscles in the back and chest. Such turn into more strained and more painful due to the constant motion of your chest wall and then back when you start coughing.

Rupture of nasal veins

They are mostly known as the small veins that reside in the nose and right under the eyes, and these can be easily ruptured because of the enhanced pressure in your vessels whenever you begin coughing. It would indicate itself as the nosebleed.


Feel free to apply some home remedies for cough if you want to feel more relaxed. Regular coughing is more likely to lead to the swelling of your vocal cords (known as acute laryngitis). This will be the cause that leads to some particular changes in the voice.


Undeniably, suffering a chronic cough would be so exhausting, especially when coughing can easily disrupt your whole sleep. In this case, it’s OK to rely on the home remedies for cough to help yourself feel much better.

Top 22 natural home remedies for cough

You can treat coughs with some medicines, but if you prefer to avoid chemicals, you can take some home remedies for cough with phlegm we’ve listed as below:

1. Honey

Honey - Home Remedies for Cough

Honey was proved to be a time-honored remedy for a sore throat. According to a study taken in 2007, Coughs can be relieved more effectively by honey than other over-the-counter medicines. By mixing honey with herbal tea, warm water, and lemon, you have an effective home remedy to treat coughing. The lemon and honey go together can help with congestion, it will make you feel better [2][3].

Read more:  How to Get Rid of Blemishes.

2. Turmeric

Turmeric is quite effective in treating viral infections like a cough. Because the active agent called curcumin that is contained in turmeric has strong anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory propertie.

Turmeric - Home Remedies for Cough

You can create a home remedy by mixing a teaspoon of turmeric powder with the equal amount of carom seeds. Boiling it with water until only half of it remains. You can use it with a little honey and take it three times a day. Another choice for you is warm milk, you can also drink it with some turmeric to relieve a cough.

3. Ginger

If you want something that can soothe irritation and scratchiness, to leave a cleansing effect on your respiratory system, Ginger is a good choice. Ginger is a natural analgesic and is a common ingredient in cough syrups and lozenges [4].

Ginger - Home Remedies for Cough

The simplest home remedies are rubbing your chest with ginger oil or chewing ginger slides. Besides, you can boil ginger powder with water. When It is cooled off, you should take it three times a day to relieve a cough.

4. Garlic

Garlic - Home Remedies for Cough

Garlic can be one of the best choices to against a cough. The active agent called allicin that contained in garlic has anti-microbial, anti-bacterial, anti-viral properties. It can boost the immune system and fights with infections that cause a cough.

Boil a glass of water with a few garlic cloves, while it’s boiling, add up a teaspoon of oregano. After it’s cooled off, add some honey to the mixture and consume it twice a day. This mixture will also help relieve soreness. Read more: Home Remedies for Oral Thrush.

5. Onion

Onion - Home Remedies for Cough

Cutting onions is one of the simplest home remedies for a cough. You can breath in the strong vapor and coughing will stop. Besides, from baked onion juice, comfrey tea, and honey, you can also make a cough syrup.

Drink it daily and it can help relieve coughing. And another option, creating a mixture of one-half teaspoon of onion juice with one teaspoon of pure honey, swallow it twice a day to relieve a cough and soothe the throat [5].

6. Carrot Juice

Carrot Juice - Home Remedies for Cough
Carrot Juice

Carrots contain many vitamins and nutrients that can help relieve various symptoms of a cough.

Its juice can offer you a great way to consume a significant number of nutrients in fruits and veggies even though you have troubles in eating many servings of the whole produce every day.  Besides, it contains natural sugar that will give your whole body enough energy.

Dilute five carrots with some water and then add one teaspoon of honey, you will have a good-tasted mixture to relieve a cough. Drink the juice at least three times a day [6].

7. Lemons

Lemon contains vitamin C and properties can reduce inflammation and fight with infections. By combining two spoons of lemon juice and one spoon of honey, you will have a cough syrup. Drink it several times a day can help you relive a cough. Besides that, you can make a mixture by blending lemon juice with honey and a pinch of cayenne and then drink it.

8. Grapes

Grapes - Home Remedies for Cough

Don’t miss this type of fruit when it’s naturally one of the most effective home remedies for cough.

You can eat grapes or make some fresh grape juice, drink it with a spoon of honey, this will be soothing as well as effective. Grapes contain properties can release the mucus from the affected part of the respiratory system, and when you get rid of the lime, you get rid of coughing.

9. Hot Milk with Honey

Continuous coughing can be the cause of a dry cough and a chest pain, and warm milk with honey is an excellent cure among several home remedies for cough in chest.  

Drinking it before the sleep for best results. Besides, you can swallow a teaspoon of plain honey when your stomach is empty, this will help clear mucus, soothe the throat and you will take benefits from the analgesic properties of honey.

10. Cayenne

It is another choice out of many home remedies for cough I’ve mentioned today. It can reduce chest pain caused by continuous coughing, Cayenne. It is also warming and stimulating.

By mixing up 1-4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1-4 teaspoon ground ginger, one tablespoon honey, tablespoons apple cider vinegar and 2 tablespoons of water, you will have a good cough syrup. Drink it at least 2-3 times a day, and you will feel better.

11. Almonds

Almonds - Home Remedies for Cough

You can heal cough symptoms easily by nutritional properties contained in Almonds, which is why I put this in the list of the best home remedies for cough.

Take five to six almonds and soak it in water for 8 to 10 hours. From soaked almonds, make a smooth paste with one teaspoon of butter added up. Use that smooth paste three to four times a day until your coughing symptoms go away

12. Brew Black Pepper Tea for A Wet Cough.

Rooted in two very different traditions: New England medicine and traditional Chinese medicine, this natural hack as compared to other home remedies for cough will effectively help us relieve a cough. For making tea, it is quite simple to do do the teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper and two tablespoons of honey into a cup, fill with boiling water, then steep, cover it for 15 minutes.

Black pepper will stimulate circulation and mucus flow, and honey is the best choice to relieve a cough and mild antibiotic. We consider it as best used on coughs that produce mucus, and it’s not suitable for dry coughs.

These home remedies can give you relief from the various symptoms of a cough without using medicines. But if you continue to cough for more than two weeks, you should go to consult the doctors

13. Dried ginger with pepper

Have dry out the ginger and black pepper together! It’s a traditional mixture that we can use as one of the most practical home remedies for cough. It’s an effective treatment which will bring you a quick relief. It needs mentioning here that the dry ginger is just nothing but only the dried ginger root after the light steaming.

However, it will be different from the raw herb, and it’s not just in the taste but also the flavor or its appealing ability. Prepare the rock sugar powdered and the spices, which makes it more comfortable when you drink it or mix one pinch of a half of pure honey.

14. Hot soup

Consuming hot soup, which is also a right way out of other home remedies for cough, is super soothing for your throat and extremely helpful in relieving the cough with flu and cold.

Chicken soup is one of the most common, but according to some studies, they prove that the spicy substances contained in the soup (garlic, ginger, black pepper, and onion) can quickly fix the problem, so most of the soups having these ingredients will work well.

15. Raisins

These are nothing but the dried snacks, which comprises of a lot of sugars plus other helpful compounds. For this reason, grapes are among the most reliable home remedies for cough you can apply for instant relief. Besides, using raisins is considered quite appealing to kids who usually have the noses turned up at several concoctions they’re obliged to drink up.

For smaller kids, make a paste by cooking the raisins in a pot of fresh water with sugar for a thicker consistency.

16. Licorice

Licorice is actually the root taken from the leguminous plant called the Glycyrrhiza glabra, which is available in some parts of European and Asian countries. These roots of Licorice have been availed as a common and effective method out of other home remedies for cough. And kids are often given one stick of the plant so that they can chew to prevent coughs.

In reality, these licorice candies show up for this reason through those you have now would contain no actual licorice within them, just sugar.

17. Homemade cough syrup

You can buy these cough syrups in all drug stores, where are usually full of the chemical compounds and tend to arrive with some particular warnings of your drowsiness and other possible side effects. However, it’s simple to create a cough remedy with only natural substances. This mixture is as good as expected and much more helpful than other commercial versions.

As you know, the ingredients contained in this syrup would be thyme that serves as the decongestants plus mullein. They just have the anti-inflammatory effects.

18. Mullein tea

The big and velvety leaves of the “mullein Verbascum thapsus” was a traditional European method among the best home remedies for a cough and other respiratory diseases.

It used to be a typical hack for a whooping cough once this illness was too common for us to know. These leaves must always be rolled up and then smoked like the cigar. It will help relieve your hacking cough.   

19. Echinacea

The echinacea or the coneflower is widely popular in North America as a wildflower. And this western cold remedy can work in different methods. It can relieve your cough and then handle any underlying cause. Try it out even though it’s not as quick-acting as other natural hacks.  

By stimulating the immunity system by driving the operation of your blood cell, so it tends to take before you grow the worse infection. But then your frequent use has already been discovered to be quite useful when fighting the chronic coughs.

20. Black seed oil

Consider using these little black seeds of Nigella sativa, mostly known as the black seed or black cumin. It’s said to be quite helpful when it comes to the medicinal properties. These crushed seeds can easily combine with honey for curing your cough, and the black seed oil is supposed to be more potent.  

21. Marshmallow tea

It’s known as a great method out of other home remedies for cough. Marshmallow tea is good at hydrating the mucous lining in your throat and the airways. The drink is also handy as it comes to suppressing your coughs due to the tissue irritation.

It tends to be from some health issues, such as laryngitis, bronchitis, and tonsillitis. Prepare one handful of crushed dried marshmallow roots in four cups of water before filtering out the thick liquid.

22. Aloe vera juice  

By containing the gel texture that is quite soothing to your inflamed tissues, no matter if it’s the complexion or the lining in your throat, aloe vera juice is still the best to use. The anti-inflammatory effects of the aloe vera gel would help relieve a dry cough that is triggered by some allergies and other throat infections.

Home remedies for cough in babies

Cough in babies - Home remedies for cough in babies
Cough in babies

You need to mention a cough before taking any further remedial action for the kids. Let’s take a quick look at some useful home remedies for cough in babies.

Apple cider vinegar

Famous for its microbial and antibacterial features, which will kill all types of pathogens in your body, apple cider vinegar will always be an excellent method for a dry cough in kids.

The vinegar is easily mixed with crushed ginger to treat a cough. Besides, the smell of your vinegar is well-known for soothing your sore throat. Hence, use it to bring more comfort to the babies.


Using the steam therapy is one of the best choices to make, especially when the kid suffers the stuffy nose and the breathing passage. The wet cough often accompanies this condition. Also, the coziness of the steam will help loosen your mucus and let it out with ease.

Suction bulb

One of the most excellent home remedies for cough in babies is using the suction bulb. Instead of using home remedies for wet cough, doing so can clear out any mucus that blocks your nasal area that causes your wet cough. And I must say that it’s pretty simple to use it, so all you need to do here is squeezing it and putting it into the baby’s nostril before releasing it softly.

OTC treatment for A Cough


It’s also known as NAC, which is a supplement of the amino acid L-cysteine. Remember that if you take a daily dose of it, this can lessen the severity of your cough by decreasing your mucus through your airways.

Also, the studies indicate that NAC can lower any symptom in those with chronic bronchitis. It’s said to be a prolonged swelling of your airways and might cause the mucus formation, coughs, and other signs.


People who took one probiotic supplement regularly were reported to experience a 50% reduction of a cough and colds in the winter. So how do they work?

We also list them as one of the best home remedies for cough even though they won’t reduce coughing straightforward. They do this by supporting the development of good germs in your gut, which will fight against other infections involved in a cough.

Other extra tips to avoid a cough

  • Stop smoking
  • Positive changes in diets
  • Consume hot drinks and Lozenges
  • Take steamy showers
  • Uses the humidifier
  • Keep hydrated
  • Get rid of irritants from the air
  • Consult a doctor if it lasts over a couple of weeks
  • Get emergency help as coughing up blood

How to prevent coughing

Aside from learning how to cure your cough, you probably love to know how to prevent them from occurring in the first place, right? So to protect your body from flu, ensure to follow these steps as below:

  • Stop getting in touch with anyone who gets sick. Once spotting your sickness, do not go to work or get to school so that your friends and others can’t be infected.
  • Hide your nose or mouth whenever you suddenly cough out or sneeze.
  • Drink a lot of water or liquid to help yourself constantly hydrated.
  • Clean a few corners of your house, your workplace, and school on a regular basis, particularly your tables, the babies’ toys, kitchen, and so on.  
  • Wash your hands with fresh water after you’ve just coughed up, or take care of anyone who gets sick.

When to see your doctor

Make a call to your healthcare provider or doctor when a cough doesn’t seem to go away after many weeks, or when your baby is:

  • Coughing thick and greenish-yellow mucus.
  • Wheezing.
  • Having a high temperature that is above 100 F.
  • Experiencing the shortness of breath

Don’t forget to find the emergency care when you and your kid is:

  • Having troubles in breathing or swallowing.
  • Coughing up blood-tinged phlegm


  • How can I instantly cure a cough?

Let’s soothe your ticklish throat and the sensitive airways by drinking a cup of herbal tea. A warm liquid will help break up any mucus in your airways. Or you can sit in the steamy bathroom before going to sleep as well as choose any of the above home remedies for a cough to find quick relief.

  • How can I stop coughing at night naturally?

Have the bedside prepared carefully. If you begin coughing at night, then make sure to have everything you need next to the bed. For example, it can be the glass of water, drops, cough medicine, and things that appear to help.

Besides, always keep the bedding as clean as possible. If having a cough and more likely to allergies, concentrate on the bed only. Note that there will be some dust mites and little creates that might consume the dead flakes of your skin and probably lurk in your bedding. To clear them out, wash your bedding every week in the hot water.

  • How long is it normal for a cough to last?

The average period for a cough, stated by a recent study will be around 18 days. When thinking that it might be a long duration, then you’re not alone. However, according to the survey by some researchers, most people have a cough that lasts from 7 – 9 days.


The above home remedies for cough will relieve your condition, but I recommend to you and those who want to use these should research more about sources or brands. Also, beware of some herbs and supplements that might interfere with other medications. As a result, it ends up in unexpected side effects.


*Disclaim: The effectiveness from applying these natural tips will be depended on the body condition of the applicant.

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