Nobody likes to be sick, but at times it is unavoidable. Whether a sore throat is caused by allergies or a virus, when you experience that pain, all you want is fast relief.
A sore throat can be the first sign of a cold, a side effect of strained vocal cords, or an indication of something more serious like strep throat. While some cases will always require a doctor visit, there are home-remedies you may want to consider first. Here are 10 natural solutions on how to get rid of a sore throat fast.
1. Gargle with Saltwater
While it feels a lot like getting a mouthful of ocean, the salt helps to flush out irritants and bacteria.
To try this:
- Dissolve half a teaspoon of salt in a cup of water (ideally warm).
- Gargle with this mixture 3 to 4 times a day.
- Spit the water out when you’re finished gargling.
Tip: If the salty taste is too unpleasant, add a very small amount of honey to help sweeten it.
2. Drink Garlic Tea
Garlic is a natural antibiotic. It contains antioxidants that are thought to strengthen immunity and ward off infection.
To make this tea:
- Cut some fresh garlic into medium-sized slices and place them in a mug.
- Fill with boiling water.
- While the water is still hot, remove the pieces of garlic.
- Add a bag of your favorite tea to help the taste (and smell).
- Add some honey or other natural sweetener to aid the taste and make the recipe a bit more drinkable.
Drink this as much and as often as you please.
3. Get a Cinnamon Fix
Cinnamon is another naturally healthy food, as it is high in anti-oxidants. Its sweet aroma also helps to open sinuses. When you have a sore throat, that’s an added bonus as it lessens the production of mucus and drainage and will help you breathe a bit easier.
Like the previous remedy, you want to make this into a tea as well.
- Grab 1 or 2 cinnamon sticks ,1 to 1-1/2 cups of boiling water and tea of your choice.
- Once your water begins to boil, add the cinnamon sticks and let boil for 3 minutes.
- Remove the sticks and steep your favorite herbal or green tea as recommended by the label.
- Once it’s cool enough to drink, enjoy.
4. Enjoy a Bowl of Chicken Soup
The sodium in the broth may actually have anti-inflammatory properties, and it can feel good going down.
When you don’t feel well, the last thing you want to do is prepare anything difficult, so soup is a go-to anyway. But it also helps ensure you’re getting nutrients which can be challenging when eating hurts.
Vegans and vegetarians, fear not! Any dairy-free soup can be substituted for chicken. A vegetable broth would do the trick too.
5. Drink Ginger Water
Ginger is an expectorant, it helps loosen and expel mucus from the respiratory system. It acts as an anti-inflammatory, and fights off bad bacteria. It boosts circulation, increases oxygen flow and flushes out toxins.
- Grab some fresh ginger root (about 2 inches is perfect), some honey, a veggie peeler and cutting board, 3 cups of water and some wax paper.
- Wash the ginger and peel it.
- Slice the peeled ginger into small pieces, place on the cutting board and cover with the wax paper.
- Crush it with a mallet (or any sturdy kitchen utensil-even the flat side of the knife works).
- Boil the water over medium heat and add the ginger.
- Let that boil for about 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat and add honey.
I like to add lemon to mine as well, but that’s up to you. If you don’t want any ginger in your sips, you can strain before drinking. Just make sure you drink this while it’s still warm.
6. Invest in a Humidifier
When your throat hurts, the worst thing you can do is breathe in dry air. Humidifiers fill the air with moisture, making it easier to breathe and less painful for your throat.
Humidifiers come in a wide range of sizes, and some offer scents like eucalyptus. Here’s a guide on how to choose a good humidifier.