35 Science-Backed Remedies for Chest Congestion

When someone gets chest congestion, the most begged question is whether or not to spend the money and time to see a doctor, or figure out how to treat the chest congestion at home.

Chest congestion can strike during any season, and it doesn’t stop to discriminate against any age, gender, or ethnic group.

It’s a symptomatic response to a different disease or illness—which can often make it difficult to determine why the congestion is happening, and how to relieve it.

Sometimes, the root cause of congestion is a serious medical issue that needs immediate, professional attention.

In these cases, sufferers may need to see a physician for prescription medications that will treat the root cause, such as pneumonia.

However, a number of other chest-congestion remedies at home may be effective at treating both the root cause and the secondary chest congestion.

On its own, chest congestion can also lead to more problems, which makes it important to immediately and efficiently determine how to relieve chest congestion.

Some chest congestion can be avoided through proactive steps, especially if someone is particularly prone to it during everyday encounters.

 

What Is Chest Congestion?

Chest congestion is a term for excess fluid or mucus in the lungs.

These excess fluids and mucus are triggered anytime the lungs are irritated and inflamed.

The inflammation and excess fluids can impede circulation and oxygen flow, which in turn can make it difficult to take or expel a breath normally.

Deep breathing can create a burning sensation, since the lung tissues try to expand with oxygen, and don’t have room — because of the fluid or mucus plugging up the airway.

The chest often feels heavy, tight, and pressured, which causes mild to moderate discomfort.

Other symptoms include:

  • Dry or wet cough.
  • Bloody, clear, or discolored phlegm.
  • Throat pain, itching, and rawness.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Vocal changes, such as sounding hoarse.
  • Abnormal lung sounds, such as wheezing.

In lay terms, chest congestion is often referred to as an illness, but it actually isn’t one.

It’s merely a symptom that’s triggered by some other health condition or disease process.

 

What Causes Chest Congestion?

There are six main categories behind the root cause of congestion:

 

Existing Medical Condition

Chest congestion can be the result of a serious medical condition, such as lung cancer, tuberculosis, or heart disease.

It can also be a chronic disease process (such as asthma or cystic fibrosis), which routinely causes excess fluids and inflammation flair-ups that create chest congestion.

 

Chemical Poisons

Chemical exposure to poisonous gasses can cause chest congestion that is mild to severe, depending on the type, amount, and duration of exposure.

For example, combining bleach and ammonia produces a toxic gas that chemically burns the lungs.

Many industrial-strength cleaners and detergents that are used by businesses and in homes on a daily basis have health standards — which recommend that they should not be used in confined spaces, due to the risk of lung damage.

 

Smoke

Smoke inhalation (such as during a fire) can irritate the lungs and cause chest congestion.

 

Dust, Dander, and Pet Hair

Dust and dander particles are inhaled all day, every day.

They float around in the air. If you have pets, you can add pet hair and dander to the mix.

As they’re inhaled, they attach to the mucus membranes of the airways.

The mucus is then either swallowed, transported to the lungs, or coughed out.

In the lungs, the dust can cause inflammation and irritation, which in turn signals your body to make more mucus.

The body is trying to transport the irritant out. More mucus stimulates a cough reflex.

 

Infection

Respiratory infections from viruses and bacteria universally produce chest congestion.

The germs in viruses and bacteria have a similar path to dust particles, except they’re carrying infection.

 

Allergens

Allergens can appear at every turn — in perfumes, hairsprays, room deodorizers, grass, mold, mildew, or pollen.

Some people are more sensitive than others, and some are only sensitive to certain allergens.

 

How to Prevent Chest Congestion?

Prevention of chest congestion may seem impossible after looking at everything that causes it, but you can take some steps to lessen the risk of needing home remedies for chest congestion in the first place.

  • Good hygiene includes thoroughly and regularly washing your hands, which can help prevent picking up germs.
  • Always adhere to the label warnings and precautions on all chemicals.
  • Identify allergens, and avoid them whenever possible. A mask may be beneficial. For example, many people that have grass allergies wear a PPE mask when doing yardwork. Other people routinely wear PPE masks when doing housework, if they’re highly sensitive to dust.
  • When cleaning with harsh chemicals, open windows and doors. Or you can even switch to natural cleaning products, such as baking soda or vinegar.
  • If you have allergies, do away with carpet and dust-wicking upholsteries.
  • Adhering to a well-balanced diet and fluid intake can naturally boost immunity.
  • Never take antibiotics for common colds and viruses. Antibiotics are not effective on any virus. If you take antibiotics when they’re not required, it can lead to an antibiotic immunity. In other words, when chest congestion is bacterial, the antibiotic may not work.

With chronic and serious diseases, such as cystic fibrosis, prevention largely relies on actions taken to subdue or treat the primary disease process.

That said, home remedies can be beneficial to help alleviate chest-congestion effects by lessening and breaking apart the mucus it causes, and reducing inflammation as it occurs.

 

Potential Problems That Chest Congestion Can Turn Into

In most cases that aren’t related to chronic illness or disease, a bacterial infection, or a chemical, the chest congestion will eventually go away on its own, especially with the aid of good home remedies.

Left untreated, chest congestion can continue to worsen if the irritant isn’t expelled, or the excess fluid and inflammation continues to go unchecked.

This situation is especially dangerous for those with chronic congestive diseases.

The cough that accompanies chest congestion can irritate and inflame the upper airway and bronchi, leaving them more exposed to secondary infectious illnesses.

 

When to See a Doctor?

  • If chest congestion persists longer than a week, or chest congestion remedies aren’t working.
  • If you experience respiratory distress.
  • If you run a fever higher than 100.4 F.
  • If you have an existing chronic illness that affects the lungs or heart.

 

35 Ways to Get Rid of Chest Congestion

 

Drink Hot Water

The water temperature is important.

You don’t want to drink scalding hot water that will burn your passages and mouth, but it should be hot enough that you see steam, and you have to sip it.

In terms of heat, think about it like coffee or hot chocolate.

Don’t use a straw if you have nasal congestion.

By sipping directly from the cup, you’ll allow the steam to also be acting on clogged nasal passages.

For 48 hours, substitute the hot water for all other drinks.

Any carbonated drink with sugar can actually worsen phlegm and mucus by making it thicker, sticky, and harder to expel.

Hot water has been shown to dissolve phlegm to a manageable level, which can be coughed out to create congestion relief. (1, 2)

 

Apply a Warm Compress

To get chest congestion relief, try applying a warm compress directly over your chest.

Again, temperature is important. It should be as warm as your skin can withstand, without any discomfort or burning.

The heat dilates blood vessels, which allows better circulation and more oxygen to assist with breathing.

The radiant heat from the compress also helps loosen the phlegm, retract inflammation, relieve tightness, and provide a small measure of pain relief.

Be cautious with heat applications.

Do not apply them for longer than 30 minutes.

And do not apply them if you have a body temp above 100.4 F.

How to make a moist, warm compress:

  • Use a clean cloth (washcloth or dishtowel).
  • Soak in hot water.
  • Gently squeeze just enough water, so that the cloth doesn’t drip.
  • Cover the front of the chest.
  • To maintain heat, remoisten.

Alternatively, a dry heat pack or low-setting heating pad may be used.

 

Lemon Juice

Citrus fruits such as lemons are high in Vitamin C.

They work as antioxidants, which help repair and heal inflamed tissues and boost immunity to fight infections.

The citric acid in the lemon works as an antimicrobial, in order to prevent infection from taking root.

It also increases saliva production. More saliva helps keep the throat moist during coughing, and it aids in thinning mucus.

Squeeze a fresh lemon.

To help with digestion and taste, you can add some salt and warm water.

Salt also has anti-inflammatory proprieties that can assist your healing.

Lemon zest and extracted lemon oil may also be used.

The acid in lemon can irritate the throat, especially if it’s already inflamed from coughing.

For best results, remember to dilute in water.

The acid can also be harmful to tooth enamel, so be sure to brush your teeth regularly.

Some studies are showing that Vitamin C is important for relieving the symptoms of colds, as well as preventing them from occurring in the first place. (3,4,5)

 

Honey

Honey also has a broad range of antimicrobial and antiviral properties that help fight infection.

It works by inhibiting the growth of the germs that cause infection.

A significant amount of studies have demonstrated that honey is a powerful cough suppressant, which coats and soothes inflamed membranes.

It could be helpful when you have a heavy cough from a lot of excess fluids and not a lot of mucus that you need to expel.

Mix one tsp of honey in eight ounces of warm water.

Note: Do not give honey to children until they’re at least one year old.

Wild honey often contains toxin-producing bacteria, which can be detrimental or fatal to infants.

A few studies have proven that honey is more effective than any over-the-counter medicine that cures coughs. (6)

 

Onion

Onions belong to the allium plant family and have sulfur and quercetin.

They have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, mucus-thinning, and expectorant properties.

And they inhibit histamine production. Red onions are particularly high in quercetin.

If you can’t handle the strong taste of a raw onion, you can boil several sliced onions in broth for easier consumption.

Onion doesn’t lose its ability to fight chest congestion during cooking.

Another option is putting onion juice in hot water.

 

Double, Triple Team Congestion

Many of the above home remedies for chest congestion can be combined for optimal results.

For instance:

  • Add honey to herbal tea.
  • Boil onion, honey, and salt in water.
  • Combine lemon zest, honey, and hot water.
  • Add lemon oil to honey, salt, and hot water.
  • Soak raw onion in honey.
  • Put onion juice in hot water with honey.

 

Chicken Soup

It’s been used since ancient times as a cure for the common cold.

It’s been dubbed the Jewish penicillin.

And of course, grandmas across the world fully believe in its power.

Researchers from the Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine Section of the Nebraska Medical Center conducted a study on chicken soup, both store-bought and homemade.

They found evidence that it reduces inflammation.

Of course, the heat from soup also acts as a decongestant and loosens mucus. (6)

 

Gargling Salt Water

Salt and hot water both help reduce inflammation.

Salt works by binding to allergens and germs in the mouth and throat, which loosen them.

Then they can be expelled, instead of spread.

Excess salt isn’t healthy to consume, and can even be toxic in high enough amounts.

Plus, consuming the salt just carries the allergens further into the body.

The solution is to gargle.

Combine a few tbsp of salt in a couple ounces of hot water.

Stir to dispense.

For thirty seconds, swish 1/2 of the mixture around in your mouth, then spit it out.

Hold and gargle the remaining half in the throat, then spit out.

Don’t swallow!

 

Fluids and More Fluids

Drink at least eight glasses of fluid per day.

Each glass should be eight ounces, for a total of 64.

Orange juice and grapefruit juice are high in Vitamin C.

However, since sugar binds with mucus and can make it thicker, you should look for a 100% juice with no added sugar.

The fluids will thin the mucus, in order to make it easier to cough them up.

And the Vitamin C juice will provide an immunity boost.

If juice is a no-go for other health reasons, such as diabetes, then drink water.

Always consult your physician if you have a health condition that limits your fluid intake, such as congestive heart failure. (7)

 

Ginger Root

Ginger provides a powerful kick to fight chest inflammation.

It stimulates perspiration, which can reduce body temp and help get rid of toxins during the sweating process.

It also contains antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and cough-suppressant properties.

You can use powdered ginger. However, ginger is most potent when fresh and raw.

Most people find that it’s almost impossible to eat in significant amounts, without dispersing it in liquid.

To make a tea, you’ll need to steep some fresh slices in hot water.

It can be strained, or you can mince the ginger before steeping, then consume both.

 

Hot Peppers

Capsaicin is naturally found in cayenne and other hot peppers.

It works to loosen and thin mucus and improve oxygenated blood flow.

Just two teaspoons of cayenne also contain about 30% of the RDA of your vitamin A, which works as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.

When coughing, it also helps to keep the mucus membranes in the throat moisturized, since they can dry out and irritate the airways.

Cayenne peppers make you feel hot, but they’re actually reducing your core body temperature.

From a gastrointestinal standpoint, cayenne may be easiest to tolerate as a pill supplement.

If the heat isn’t an issue, you can put 1/4 tsp in juice, hot water, honey, or ginger tea. (8)

 

Black Coffee

The caffeine in coffee is fantastic for opening the airways in asthmatic chest congestions and dissolving mucus plugs that can make it difficult to breathe.

In fact, the compounds in coffee act much like commonly prescribed asthma medications.

However, the caffeine in coffee increases the pulse rate and blood pressure.

So only one or two cups of black coffee are recommended.

Anyone with hypertension or bradycardia—or who takes medications that raise blood pressure or pulse rates—should consult a physician about caffeine intake.

 

Make Some Steam

By inhaling wet heat, steam can help loosen phlegm, stimulate a cough, reduce inflammation, and stimulate bronchial dilation.

All of these benefits can help you breathe easier and expel mucus.

There are several methods for getting rid of congestion with steam.

You can turn the shower’s hot water on and shut the door while you’re inside the room.

This method works best in small bathrooms.

You can also boil water in a pot, hold your head a few inches above it, and cover your head and the pot with a towel. A steam vaporizer is another option.

One option isn’t particularly better than the other, but children and the elderly might be at a greater risk for burns with the pot and towel. (9)

 

Humidifier

To increase moisture levels, humidifiers emit water vapor or steam into the air.

They come in several options:

  • Electric steam vaporizers

A tank with hot water creates steam, which is then cooled and emitted into the air. It’s one of the most common household humidifiers.

  • Central humidifiers

These devices humidify the entire home through a built-in system within the HVAC system. They’re costly.

  • Ultrasonic humidifiers

These machines produce a cool mist through ultrasonic vibration.

  • Impeller humidifiers

A machine that uses a rotating disc to release a cool mist into the air.

  • Evaporators

These machines use a fan to blow air through a moistened component.

Humidity is simply the amount of water vapor in the air. An ideal amount of humidity is 30% to 50%.

Adding moisture to the air helps keep mucus membranes moistened, and loosens mucus plugs.

In addition, studies have shown that proper humidity levels in the air reduce the survival rate of viruses.

Note: Frequently change the filter in your humidifier.

The moist environment is ideal for fungus, mold, and bacteria to grow. (10)

 

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar contains over 30 dietary nutrients, such as B vitamins, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, potassium, magnesium, iron, and sodium.

It contains critic acid, which thins mucus.

Potassium is also fantastic at absorbing and removing mucus.

Apple cider vinegar is a potent antimicrobial that fights infection.

In fact, it’s often used as a natural alternative to many strong chemical cleaners.

For best results, use unfiltered, organic, raw vinegar.

You can take two teaspoons by mouth, or mix them with warm water.

You can also soak onions or beets in it, and consume the whole mixture.

 

Radish

The radish is a traditional Ayurveda remedy for everything from diabetes to allergic reactions, colds, asthma, and bronchitis.

It has anti-inflammatory properties that help relieve chest congestion.

Its benefits can be reaped from radish seeds, flowers, or vegetables.

Chop it up on a bed of fresh kale with a dressing made of vinegar and lemon juice, and you’ll have a powerhouse method of getting relief from chest congestion.

Radish juice is also an option. (11,12)

 

Horseradish

This medicinal plant of the brassicaceae family has been used as an antibiotic since penicillin was even considered.

It clears the upper respiratory passages.

The allyl isothiocyanate in horseradish gives it an antibacterial punch, while its Vitamin C content provides an immunity boost.

The glycoside, singrin, acts as a diuretic, which removes excess fluids and improves oxygen-rich circulation.

Horseradish is high in many other essential nutrients, including calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, glutamine, glucose, acid sulfate, and essential oils.

A 2006 German study examines the efficacy of treating bronchitis and sinusitis with horseradish. It concluded that:

  • It was at least as effective as a standard treatment of antibiotic therapies.
  • The horseradish treatment was generally safer than pharmaceutical treatment.

Another study found that horseradish has a 40% faster recovery rate than antibiotics, as well as a reduced relapse rate.

 

Mustard Powder Plaster

Mustard is also a member of the brassicaceae family of plants.

Ancient Romans and Greeks have used it as medicinal stable for centuries.

By making mustard plasters and plates for chest protection, they unwittingly discovered its powerful medicinal effects on muscle aches, arthritis, and chest congestion.

Allyl isothiocyanate is produced when mustard powder gets wet.

The compound can then be absorbed through the skin.

This action warms the area, and it provides pain and inflammation relief, as well as nerve and circulation stimulation.

How to make a mustard plaster or poultice:

  • Mix 1/2 teaspoon of dry mustard-seed powder, one tablespoon of warm water, and one tablespoon of flour, until a thick poultice paste forms.
  • Sandwich the poultice between two cloths, and apply it to the chest for 15 to 30 minutes.
  • You’ll feel it warm, and see your skin turn slightly red.

Some notes:

  • Be cautious when using it on the elderly.
  • Do not use if the chest has any open wounds or irritated areas.
  • Do not use on young children or anyone else who can’t communicate about pain sensations.
  • The poultice can burn the skin if left in place too long.
  • It should not be an uncomfortable amount of warmth. If so, remove the poultice.
  • Never apply poultice directly to the skin. (13,14)

 

Turmeric Powder

Curcumin is a compound within turmeric that has useful anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antibacterial properties.

1/2 teaspoon can be sprinkled on meals or added to milk, tea, honey, or vinegar drinks.

 

Cloves

The clove is a natural expectorant.

Fenugreek is a natural cough suppressant.

Together, they can effectively combat the effects of chest congestion.

They’ll need to be roasted in the oven on low heat for a few minutes first.

Place the warmed clove and fenugreek in a cloth sack, and place it directly over the chest and throat.

 

Oil of Oregano

A study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found oregano oil to be infective against the flu virus.

However, the same study found oregano oil inhibiting one form of yeast, 12 different fungi, and 25 forms of bacteria.

There are at least 50 active compounds in oregano oil with properties that assist immunity.

It fights bacteria, parasites, and fungi. It also reduces inflammatory processes.

Its nutrient content includes vitamins A, vitamin C, calcium, potassium, zinc, iron, manganese, magnesium, boron, and copper.

To use, you can steep oregano leaves in tea, strain, and drink.

Or you can apply the oil directly to your chest. (15)

 

Saline

If your chest congestion is accompanied by sinus congestion, saline can be used as a nasal spray or sinus wash.

Saline nasal spray can be bought over-the-counter.

It can also be homemade by mixing three teaspoons of non-iodized salt, 1 teaspoon of baking soda, and 1 cup of boiled or sterile water.

Fill a squeeze bottle with the mixture, and gently squirt up each nostril, one at a time.

Notes:

  • It’s not uncommon for some of it to run into your mouth. Do not swallow. After completing both nostrils, spit out the mixture, and rinse your mouth out with a salt gargle.
  • Make sure to use sterile water or boiled water, so as to ensure that you aren’t introducing more contaminants into your sinuses. (16)

 

Saffron

Antioxidants and anti-inflammatory power come from the crocin and safranal in the saffron plant.

It helps loosen mucus and has been studied as a treatment for whooping cough and asthma.

Saffron tea is warming and helps improve circulation, so it clears and thins mucus more effectively.

Just before boiling, gently warm milk, a pinch of saffron, 1/4 tsp of honey, and 1/4 tap lemon zest.

Remove from heat, and let the ingredients diffuse through the milk for several minutes.

Drink it warm.

Note: Saffron is pricy. In fact, it’s hailed as the most expensive spice in the world per ounce. (17)

 

Garlic

Garlic is an anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and anti-microbial, because of the allicin in it.

Selenium, iron, calcium, copper, manganese, phosphorous, vitamin B6, and vitamin C are also found in garlic.

Evidence shows that 18th-century French gravediggers drank garlic-infused wine as prevention for the plague.

Soldiers in both World Wars swore that garlic staves off gangrene.

A 2001 study in the Advances in Therapy publication showed that cold symptoms can be averted through garlic consumption.

Fresh garlic, garlic powder, or garlic oil can be added to meals. (18)

 

Fennel Seed

Fennel decreases respiratory tract secretions.

Fennel seeds can be added to salads or sprinkled on foods.

They also make a good strained tea.

Fennel’s essential oil is easy to add to a humidifier.

Note: Fennel has properties that mimic estrogen, so it can, therefore, interfere with certain birth-control drugs. (19)

 

Eucalyptus Oil

Dried eucalyptus leaves are used to make oil that can reduce fever, loosen phlegm, suppress a cough, reduce swelling, and act as an antiseptic.

Notes:

  • Never use undiluted eucalyptus oil.
  • Do not use eucalyptus oil over broken or inflamed skin.
  • Immediately stop use if a rash, redness, or swelling occurs.

It can be diluted with water, applied to the chest, and dabbed under the nose.

It can also be added to humidifiers or steam treatments in an undiluted form.

Or you can make eucalyptus tea.

Lemon Eucalyptus is a related tree.

The essential oil derived from its leaves are often used in a diluted form as a chest rub.

 

Licorice Root

Licorice root, or glycyrrhiza glabra, is a favorite cough suppressant for children, because of its natural sweetness.

In its natural state, it’s 50 times sweeter than honey or raw sugar.

By forming a thin film over the mucus membranes, its compounds soothe sore throats and itchy airways, which also help expel coughed-up phlegm.

To make a licorice tea, boil one dried licorice root in three or four ounces of water.

Remove from heat, and allow to disperse before straining and drinking the warm liquid.

Notes:

  • Licorice can raise blood pressure. If you have heart disease or hypertension or take medications that raise your blood pressure, you should consult with your physician before consuming licorice.
  • It may raise the adrenal cortex hormone aldosterone.
  • Immediately stop using it if you experience headaches, swelling, numbness in the extremities, or fluid retention.
  • Due to the sugar content, consult a physician before using licorice if you’re diabetic.
  • Do not use licorice if you have kidney or liver disease, without consulting your physician.
  • Always consult a pediatrician before giving licorice root to children.
  • Do not drink licorice root for an extended period of time, nor in excessive amounts per day. Only drink one root per day, for no longer than 7 days. (20)

 

Parsley

Parsley leaves help mucus breakup and move along.

The dried leaves are rich in flavonoids that provide inflammatory and antioxidant protection.

It can be consumed by sprinkling the dried flakes or, even better, the chopped fresh leaves on foods. (21)

 

Chamomile Oil

This soothing, herbal remedy provides anti-inflammatory treatment to irritated and inflamed airways through inhalation.

Add a few drops to a humidifier or steam treatment.

Chamomile tea is also a good option.

 

Peppermint

When inhaled, consumed, or applied directly to the skin, this powerful antioxidant helps open airways and improve circulation to congested chests. (22)

 

Rosemary

Rosemary is another soothing herb for the lungs.

It also has antimicrobial and antioxidant features.

Take a steam bath with rosemary infusion.

Add the oil to your humidifier.

Rosemary tea has a mild flavor that many find more tolerable that saffron and stronger teas.

The oil can be applied directly on the chest and dabbed under the nose.

 

Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil comes from the tea tree plant or melaleuca alternifolia.

It has significant antibacterial and antiviral properties, which make it perfect for inhaling through steam or a humidifier.

It can also be applied directly over the chest and under the nose.

If drying occurs, dilute the tea tree oil with a few drops of unscented lotion.

Note: Do not consume tea tree oil by mouth. It’s toxic if ingested.

 

Percussion

Percussion is a non-invasive, airway-clearing technique that’s often taught to and utilized by those with chronic diseases.

It impacts fluid in the lungs, such as cystic fibrosis and debilitating spinal injuries.

By using vibration, the trapped mucus is moved from smaller, tighter airways into the larger ones.

That way, it can be coughed up.

This method can be accomplished by gently clapping the chest with the palm of a cupped hand.

The clapping should follow the center of the ribcage downward to the bottom, percussing each area 10-12 times before moving down a few inches.

 

Colloidal Silver

Colloidal silver contains pure silver suspended in liquid.

Its antiviral and antibacterial components lock on to infection proteins and destroy them.

Its usage dates back to the bubonic plague; it’s the way that the British royalty didn’t perish in Europe like millions of others.

Until symptoms subside, take 1/2 to 1 teaspoon in eight ounces of water up to three times per day.

Notes:

  • Do not use if you’re allergic to silver.
  • If you develop a skin rash, fever, or other signs of an allergic reaction, stop using immediately.
  • Do not use longer than a week. The silver from the suspension is deposited in vital organs (such as the liver, spleen, kidney, skin, brain, and muscle), which can lead to organ disease or failure.

 

Movement

Movement can help loosen mucus plugs and phlegm.

It’s difficult because most people feel tired and just want the congestion to go away while they’re resting.

However, given that you don’t have a fever, the best thing you can do is move around.

Do yoga, jumping jacks, jog in place, or climb a set of stairs.

Do anything to create the vibration that natural movement creates.

It will stimulate a cough.

If you’ve used one of the above home remedies to thin secretions, it will allow you to expel the excess mucus, and get on with getting well.

 

Do’s and Don’ts

In closing, here are some do’s and don’ts that you should consider as you choose any of the home remedies for chest congestion.

  • Get at least eight uninterrupted sleep each night.
  • Sleep on your side, with your head elevated and unobstructed.
  • Stay hydrated, and eat a well-balanced diet.
  • Load up on hot spices.
  • As uncomfortable as it may be, take at least one deep breath every 30 minutes, and have a good cough.
  • Consult a physician if symptoms last longer than a week. They do not improve or worsen after having home remedies, or you run a high-grade fever.
  • Before using a home treatment, consult your physician if you have any chronic respiratory illness or disease.
  • Do not use chemicals that can irritate the respiratory system.
  • Avoid additional sugar.
  • Avoid tobacco.
  • Remember to brush your teeth often.
  • Wash hands frequently.
  • Keep your environment as clean as possible.

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