15 Quick Home Remedies for Upper Respiratory Infection
What is Upper Respiratory Tract Infection?
Upper Respiratory Tract Infection (URI) affects your throat, sinuses, nose and ears. It’s generally called as Common Cold. Though it is not a serious infection, it is very tiring and causes a lot of discomforts.
A sore throat, runny nose, fever, sneezes, cough, headaches etc are some of its symptoms. It usually lasts from one week to 15 days. Upper respiratory tract infections are most common in winter and fall months because of low humidity.
Most URIs are self-treatable and self-diagnosable. In this article, we have rounded up 15 home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections.
Fortunately, we are having lots of home remedies for upper respiratory infection (URI). The common symptoms of URI is a Watery nose, Sneezing, Sore throat, Water in Eyes, Sometimes Breathing Difficulty etc…
What are the Causes of URI?
Upper Respiratory Tract Infection is generally caused by viruses and germs. There is a wide range of cold viruses.
The cold-causing viruses are contagious and spread easily by sneezing, coughing and touching. People suffer from cold in the winter months. Sometimes it is caused by the stress. Cold is also common in cigarette smokers.
The worst part about the upper respiratory tract infection is it spreads quickly. It is very contagious and spreads while we come in contact with the infected person.
Upper Respiratory Infection Home Remedies:
1. Steam Therapy
One of the easiest but effective home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections is inhaling the steam.
All you have to do is to boil at least 1 litre of water. Put a camphor piece in the hot water. Inhale the steam for till it lasts. Inhaling 15-20 minutes is good enough. It cleans up the respiratory tracts which are blocked.
The steam melts down the mucous membranes and you’ll observe an instant relief after doing it. Steam therapy is the best natural remedy for nasal congestion and provides necessary lubrication to the respiratory tracts.
It is not suitable for the persons who are suffering from high blood pressure. Pregnant women and kids are also not recommended to do a steam therapy.
Nasal congestion is caused by the bacteria and honey has got immense antibacterial properties. It is easily available and probably you may already have it in your kitchen.
It helps in fighting the bacteria which is causing nasal infections and the best part is your kids will love it. Kids can directly consume an ounce of honey to get relieved from the respiratory tract infection. Or put a spoon of honey in the warm water and add few drops of lemon juice.
Make your kids drink it at least 2 times a day. Adding a spoon of honey in the warm milk and consuming it can also give you a good relief.
3. Essential Oils
Essential oils are full of benefits. Each and every essential oil has got its own range of uses. Mix 2 drops of bergamot, lavender and tea-tree oils to cream milk or 5 teaspoons of jojoba or sweet almond or avocado oil or any carrier oil.
Add the mixture to a hot bath. Relax in the bathtub for at least 25 minutes.
Note: Pregnant women and persons with sensitive skin are not recommended to do this as essential oils may react quite harshly with the sensitive skins.
4. Steam Therapy with Essential Oils
The first remedy in this list is a steam bath with a piece of camphor in it. You can also do it with camphor or eucalyptus essential oil.
Take a bowl of water and boil it. Add 4 or 5 drops of camphor or eucalyptus oil. Inhale the steam from the bowl. You can use a towel to not let the steam escape. Breathe the steam slowly in a relaxed manner.
5. Sit in Early Morning Sun
Early morning sunlight is precious. It’s an impossible thing to be in the sunlight in the late morning or in noon especially in the tropical countries.
But an early morning sunrise definitely provides a great amount of relief. If your respiratory tract infection is caused by lack of vitamin D in your body, just chill out in the sun for 20 minutes. It provides necessary vitamin D.
Early morning sun is not harsh and strong, you can easily sit for 20 minutes without any discomfort.
6. Quit Smoking
Nothing irritates the mucous membranes like a cigarette smoke. The sinuses, lungs and nose membranes are sensitive and they cannot tolerate the smoke especially when you have the respiratory tract infection. Smoking makes them prone to infections and increases a cough and cold.
Ginger is a super herb as it has got solutions for a number of ailments. Respiratory tract infection can easily be relieved with ginger root.
The anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and antiviral characteristics of ginger acts as an effective remedy to fight against the respiratory tract infection. Just chewing a piece of ginger can provide you instant relief.
If you do not like the taste, add a pinch of salt to the ginger piece. Another best way to consume ginger is ginger tea. Add a few slices of ginger in hot water and a spoon of honey.
8. Wash your Hands
Hygiene is very important to stay away from the infections. Respiratory tract infections are mainly caused due to bad hygiene habits.
According to a survey, Japan has got very minimal upper respiratory tract infection cases. It is because of their habit of washing their hands frequently. It is recommended to wash the hands’ number of times to stay away from the respiratory tract infections.
If you are suffering from cold or tonsilitis, do not let the nasal secretions spread on your hands. Use kerchiefs or tissue papers to clean yourself often.
9. Liquorice Tea
Liquorice root has got wonderful immunity boosting and anti-inflammatory properties. It works great to provide relief from upper respiratory tract infections.
Add a liquorice root to boiling water and let it boil for some time. Strain the water and drink it.
10. Turmeric Milk
Turmeric is very popular for its antibacterial properties. It is also good to cure inflammation and upper respiratory tract infection. Add a teaspoon of powdered turmeric in 200 ml or a glassful of lukewarm milk.
Drink it every day before going to sleep. Soon you’ll realize the benefits. It’s certainly one of the wonderful home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections.
11. Gargle with Salt Water
Respiratory tract infections are caused when the mucous membranes are blocked. Gargling eases up the membranes and provides a good relief.
Use warm salt water to gargle in the mornings to get relieved from the throat and nasal infections. Gargling thins the mucous and it becomes easy to spit it out. Mix a tablespoon of salt in a glass of lukewarm water.
Let the salt dissolve and use the solution to gargle every morning. It clears the nasal passages and relieves you from the infection.
12. Breathing Exercises
Breathing exercises help to relieve your respiratory tract and eases the nasal membranes.
Try to breathe deep enough, so that the mucous get thinner and it will be easy to throw it out. Breathing exercises like pranayama are also useful to relax and increase your immunity.
13. Garlic Oil
Garlic needs no introduction. It combats quite effectively with the sicknesses like common cold and other respiratory problems.
Take a glass of water and add a tablespoon of onion juice and few drops of garlic oil and drink it. This is one of the ancient techniques to cure respiratory tract infections.
14. Learn to De-stress
Stress has become coming to modern day living. Respiratory tract infections attack repeatedly because of the stress.
Stress also causes many other diseases which are more dangerous. Learn to relax. Try to keep all your worries aside for at least some time.
Things like music and yoga help to be away from the negative thoughts. Meditation helps to de-stress and relax our mind.
15. Steam Bath With Eucalyptus Leaves
Inhaling steam provides a great relief for the persons who are suffering from upper respiratory tract infections.
It has been an ancient practice and it is the best till date for all kinds of respiratory problems.
We have already covered steam bath with essential oils and camphor in this list. Inhaling the steam from the hot water with eucalyptus leaves clears the nasal congestion.
This is one of the popular home remedies throughout the Asian countries.
Upper respiratory tract infections last for two weeks. Though it causes severe discomfort, it is self-diagnosable.
Use any of the above home remedies to get rid of upper respiratory tract infections. If your symptoms are severe or if the cold lasts more than two weeks, it is recommended to consult your doctor.
Please let us know if you know any other home remedies for common cold so that we’ll update this article.
Bonus Video: Upper Respiratory Tract Infection Facts That You Should Know
Disclaimer: We hope that our home remedies helped you to get rid of the respiratory tract infection. However, our advice is the generic one.
It’s not a qualified medical advice. Please consult a general physician or your family doctor if you need any professional help.