7 Tips to Soothe Your Cough

Can't stop coughing with no lozenges in sight? Try these 7 alternatives to calm your throat. You probably already have them on hand! 

Bruce and Jeanne Lubin
2-minute read
coughing in bed
The Quick And Dirty

If you feel a cough coming on, check your pantry for these quick fixes: grape juice, lemon and honey, osha root, hard candy, cayenne pepper, ginger tea, and thyme. 

Grape Juice

If you have a persistent cough, try grape juice! It’s one of the most effective home remedies for the treatment of a cough, and can tone up the lungs and act as an expectorant, relieving a simple cold and cough in a couple of days. So don’t buy the over-the-counter cough syrups—a cup of grape juice mixed with a teaspoon of honey should do the trick.

Lemon and Honey

Another terrific—and delicious—homemade cough syrup is lemon and honey! Mix together a teaspoon of lemon juice and a teaspoon of honey and take whenever the coughing kicks in. You’ll be amazed at how well it works, and you don’t have to buy any fancy ingredients!

Osha Root

Long used as a Native American remedy for everything from respiratory ailments to body aches, this herb grows in the Rocky Mountains and in the mountainous regions of Mexico. It’s considered particularly effective for coughs and sore throats, and it’s available in syrup form, which you can take several times a day just like a regular cough syrup. Give it a shot to see if it halts your hacking cough in its tracks.

Hard Candy

If you don’t happen to have any cough drops on hand, just pop a piece of hard candy. Both candy and cough drops increase saliva production, helping to soothe and quiet your cough. Whatever you can scrounge up from the bottom of your purse will do just fine!

Cayenne Pepper

If you like spicy food, you’ll love this cough remedy. Mix together a little cayenne pepper in a glass of water and use it as a gargle. It’s disinfecting and will increase blood flow to the throat to fight off the infection.

Ginger Tea

Ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory. To soothe a nasty cough, drink a cup of ginger tea. You can use tea bags or—even better—grate some fresh ginger into a mug and let it steep for five minutes. Then strain and enjoy with a little honey. It will feel terrific on your throat and stop the cough.


Thyme tea is also effective against coughs. To make a tea, place a teaspoon of dried leaves in a cup and fill with hot water. Let it steep for five to ten minutes, strain, and enjoy. Thyme contains compounds that will help relax the throat muscles so you’ll stop coughing. It’s also a great antiseptic!


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About the Author

Bruce and Jeanne Lubin

Bruce Lubin and Jeanne Bossolina-Lubin are the proud parents of three boys and more than a dozen books. After saving thousands per year using everyday tips and simple lifehacks, they started their own business in the hopes of sharing their knowledge with others. They have been known to go into their friends' refrigerators to turn their eggs upside down so that they last longer.

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