Winter is here. The air is dry. And sore throats are among us.
One night you think you're fine and then the next morning, you wake up with a cactus in your throat.
Before you venture out into the cold to pick up cough drops and medicine, try these sore throat home remedies with items already at home!
Gargle with warm salt water
Gargling with warm salt water can help soothe a sore throat and break down secretions (ew). It’s also known to help kill bacteria in the throat. Make a saltwater solution with a half-teaspoon of salt in a full glass of warm water. Gargle it to help reduce swelling and keep the throat clean.
This… over cough syrup? Yes, please. We’ll take two spoonfuls of honey willingly, sick or not.
Studies find that honey is even more effective at relieving nighttime coughs than common cough medicine suppressants. Other research shows that honey is an effective wound healer, which means it may help speed healing for sore throats.
Chamomile tea is naturally sooothing.
It has long been used for medicinal purposes, like soothing a sore throat. It’s often used for its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and astringent properties. Some studies have shown that inhaling chamomile steam can help relieve symptoms of a cold, including a sore throat. Drinking chamomile tea can offer the same benefit.
And no, you don’t have to use a tiny tea set to reap the benefits of this tea!
Diluted peppermint oil sprays may also relieve sore throats. Peppermint contains menthol, which helps thin mucus (ew, again) and calm sore throats and coughs. Peppermint also has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antiviral properties, which may encourage healing.
Never use essential oils without mixing them with a carrier oil such as olive oil, sweet almond oil, or softened coconut oil. For peppermint oil, mix five drops of the essential oil with one ounce of the carrier oil of your choice. Never ingest essential oils.
We’d venture to say that if you don’t have peppermint oil, your grandma does.
Baking Soda Gargle
While the saltwater gargle is more commonly used, gargling baking soda mixed with salt water can help relieve a sore throat as well. Gargling this solution can kill bacteria and prevent the growth of yeast and fungi. Recommend use is to rinse every three hours as needed.