With summer coming to an end, it’s time to think about the implications of colder weather and how to prepare accordingly. Sore throats are more common in the colder autumn and winter months than at other times of the year because the air becomes drier, making your respiratory lining more susceptible to infection.
Sore throats don’t always lead to a trip to the doctor’s office, but they can prevent a good night of sleep and are generally uncomfortable.
So whether you’re looking to plan ahead or a victim of weather-related colds, here are four natural sore throat remedies you can use at home.
Whichever way you choose to consume it, honey will help soothe the symptoms of a sore throat. In fact, many studies have shown that honey is just as effective as cough suppressants for treating sore throats.
Honey also has antibacterial properties naturally, which can help fight off any bacterial or viral infections.
It’s important to note that infants under one year old should not be given honey.
You can mix honey into a cup of tea, take a spoonful before bed, or find your own way to add honey to your diet.
Dissolve a half teaspoon of salt in a full glass of warm water, and then gargle (without swallowing) every one to three hours for some sore throat relief.
The saltwater can help reduce irritation and swelling in your throat, as well as help kill any bacteria.
Another alternative is gargling a saltwater solution with baking soda, which can also help kill bacteria and prevent further bacterial growth.
One quick recipe is to add ¼ teaspoon of baking soda and ⅛ teaspoon of salt to a glass of warm water.
Then, gargle three to four times daily, and rinse your mouth with water afterward.
Chamomile or Peppermint Tea
Both types of tea are good choices for relieving a sore throat naturally. Research has suggested that chamomile tea can be effective in helping to relieve cold symptoms, including a sore throat. It also has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and can help boost your immune system.
Peppermint tea also has anti-inflammatory properties, and the menthol from peppermint can help naturally soothe and calm your sore throat.
Both chamomile and peppermint are naturally non-caffeinated, which is important since you want to ensure you get plenty of rest when recovering from a sore throat.
Adding honey to a chamomile or peppermint tea is a great way to suppress a sore throat naturally at home!
While this may be surprising to some, a hot toddy may help relieve your sore throat. A hot toddy is a drink that consists of a mixture of honey, lemon, whiskey, and hot water–though some people also add in spices such as ginger or cinnamon.
Honey, as already mentioned, can help reduce irritation to your throat and has antibacterial properties.
Lemons are packed with vitamin C and can help boost your immune system, as well as help break up any mucus in your throat.
Whiskey (in small amounts) can also help thin and break up mucus.
Alcohol consumption can exacerbate colds or sicknesses, but a small amount of whiskey in a hot toddy may help relieve a simple sore throat.
A lesser-known yet similar drink is grzane piwo, a Polish classic that can also be used to treat sore throats.
The Bottom Line
While these natural remedies can help you relieve and recover from a sore throat, make sure you drink plenty of fluids and get enough rest to feel your best.
If your sore throat doesn’t get better or starts to get worse, see your doctor.