When you get sick with a cold or flu, you sometimes develop a nagging cough that settles into your chest. Your doctor may tell you that you have bronchitis. Simply put, bronchitis is an inflammation of your bronchial tubes. They then produce mucous, which you have to cough up.
You really need to have a doctor diagnose your condition to know for sure if you have bronchitis, but if you suspect it, you can help yourself fight back. Since bronchitis is a virus, using some common-sense techniques to fight it, along with these 6 great home remedies, may be all you need to give your body the fighting edge.
1. Sleep. One of the best things you can do for your body when you're fighting an infection, whether viral or bacterial, is sleep. Medical News Today recommends that adults get seven to eight hours of sleep and children get 10 to 12 hours of sleep.
2. Fluids. Another important piece to getting well, according to Health, is drinking plenty of fluid. The fluids keep your mucous liquid so you can cough it up easier. Water is one of the best, but a honey and lemon tea is also a good choice. The Spruce combines 1 inch of ginger, grated and steeped in 1 cup of boiling water, with 1 tablespoon honey and 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Steep the ginger root for 3 minutes and then strain the water. Add the lemon juice and honey. You can add cinnamon or nutmeg if you want.
3. Steam. WebMD says that sleeping with a humidifier or regularly inhaling steam is important as that will continue to keep the mucous liquid and easy to cough up.
4. Cough expectorant. Medical News Today says to use a cough expectorant, not a cough suppressant. A honey and lemon syrup is a great choice. You can make your own with a recipe from the National Honey Board. Combine 1 1/2 tablespoons of lemon zest and 1/4 cup ginger root, peeled and sliced. Add 1 cup of boiling water and let it simmer for 5 minutes. Strain the liquid and add the honey and lemon. Stir until it forms a syrup. Store the expectorant in a jar. For people 12-years-old and up, give 1 to 2 tablespoons of syrup every four hours.
5. Face mask. The Mayo Clinic recommends that those who are suffering from bronchitis wear a face mask when going outside into the cold, as the cold air will exacerbate the inflamed airways.
6. Salt water. Another recommendation from Health is to gargle with salt water. The Mayo Clinic says to combine 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt with 8 ounces of warm water.
Although bronchitis may knock you down, you can give yourself the upper hand and help your body win the battle. The next time you have bronchitis, reach for some honey and lemon and then take a nap!