How To

How To Stop A Cough


How To Stop A Cough

Share this article

How To Stop A Cough

How to Stop a Cough: Natural Remedies and Medical Treatments

A cough is a common symptom of many respiratory conditions, including the common cold, flu, and bronchitis. While coughing can help clear mucus and irritants from the airways, it can also be disruptive and uncomfortable. Fortunately, there are several effective ways to stop a cough, both natural and medical.

Natural Remedies

  • Honey: Honey has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that can help soothe sore throats and reduce coughing. Take 1-2 teaspoons of honey as needed.
  • Lemon: Lemon juice contains vitamin C, which can boost the immune system. Add fresh lemon juice to hot water or tea and sweeten with honey or agave nectar.
  • Ginger: Ginger has expectorant properties that can help loosen mucus and reduce coughing. Steep grated ginger in hot water for 10 minutes, strain, and drink.
  • Marshmallow root: Marshmallow root contains mucilage, a soothing substance that can coat the throat and reduce inflammation. Take marshmallow root extract or tea as directed.
  • Slippery elm: Slippery elm has similar properties to marshmallow root, helping to soothe and lubricate the throat. Take slippery elm extract or tea as directed.

Medical Treatments

  • Cough suppressants: Cough suppressants, such as dextromethorphan and codeine, can help block the cough reflex. However, it’s important to use these medications only as directed and not for extended periods, as they can lead to addiction or side effects.
  • Expectorants: Expectorants, such as guaifenesin, help loosen and thin mucus, making it easier to cough up.
  • Mucolytics: Mucolytics, such as acetylcysteine, break down mucus into smaller pieces, making it easier to cough up.
  • Bronchodilators: Bronchodilators, such as albuterol and salmeterol, help relax the muscles in the airways, making it easier to breathe and reducing coughing.
  • Antihistamines: Antihistamines, such as loratadine and cetirizine, can help block the release of histamines, which can trigger coughing in allergic reactions.

Other Tips

  • Stay hydrated: Drinking plenty of fluids helps thin mucus and reduce coughing.
  • Use a humidifier: Adding moisture to the air can help soothe irritated airways and reduce coughing.
  • Gargle with salt water: Gargling with salt water (1/2 teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of warm water) can help soothe a sore throat and reduce inflammation.
  • Elevate your head at night: Elevating your head at night can help reduce post-nasal drip, which can trigger coughing.
  • Avoid irritants: Avoid exposure to irritants such as smoke, dust, and pollen, which can worsen coughing.

When to See a Doctor

Most coughs will resolve within a few weeks. However, it’s important to see a doctor if:

  • Your cough lasts longer than 3 weeks.
  • Your cough is severe or persistent.
  • You have difficulty breathing or shortness of breath.
  • You cough up blood or discolored mucus.
  • You have a fever or chills.
  • You have other symptoms such as fatigue, weight loss, or chest pain.


Q: What is the best way to stop a dry cough?
A: Honey, lemon juice, ginger, marshmallow root, and slippery elm can help soothe sore throats and reduce coughing.

Q: What is the best way to stop a wet cough?
A: Expectorants, mucolytics, and bronchodilators can help loosen and thin mucus, making it easier to cough up.

Q: Is it okay to suppress a cough?
A: While coughing can be disruptive, it’s important to allow it to help clear mucus and irritants from the airways. However, if your cough is severe or persistent, you may want to consider taking cough suppressants as directed by your doctor.

Q: Can allergies cause coughing?
A: Yes, allergies can trigger coughing as the body tries to expel allergens. Antihistamines can help block the release of histamines and reduce coughing.

Q: How can I prevent coughing?
A: Wash your hands frequently, avoid exposure to irritants, and stay up-to-date with vaccinations to reduce your risk of respiratory infections that can cause coughing.