20 Home Remedies for a Dry Cough

There are a handful of ways you can cough without actually clearing your throat of anything. These coughs can ever happen when you’re not ill.  Non productive coughs are also called dry coughs. Asthma and the harsh panting or wheezing it brings can dry your throat and make you cough.

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), also commonly known as acid reflux,  can cause dry coughing as a result of stomach acid going back up your throat and irritating your esophagus.



Post Nasal Drip (snot running down the back of your throat after a nasty cold or suffering from allergies) can cause a dry cough as well.

Viral infections are another known cause of a dry cough.

Lesser causes include environmental and airborne irritants, whooping cough,  lung cancer, heart failure, and a collapsed lung.


Home Remedies for a Dry Cough


Some of the causes behind a dry cough are quite serious. Try some of these natural remedies, but if your dry cough doesn’t go away after a few days, please see your doctor.

  1. Stay Hydrated

Drinking enough moistens your throat and can help to thin the snot of a post nasal drip. Try to drink at least eight glasses of water a day.

watermelon, fruit, skin, black spots

Eating watermelon can also help to keep you hydrated

  1. Hot Beverages

If your dry cough is related to a sore throat, things like different kinds of hot tea or hot apple cider can help to calm your throat drastically.


  1. Cough Drops

Cough drops or even hard candies and honey are good for a sore and dry throat. The syrups in these coat the back of the throat and keep it moist. Use these as often as needed.


  1. Steam

Hot steam or humidifiers can help to break up snot that might be giving you trouble. The moisture in the steam and humidifiers can even keep the snot from getting too dried and clumped up.


  1. Licorice Root

This root can help to coat your throat and loosen or lesson the amount of snot in your throat. If your dry cough is caused by post nasal drip, then this can help to make it a productive one.

To make this tea, all you need is two tablespoons of licorice root and eight ounces of water. Boil the water and licorice before pouring it into a cup and your drink it twice a day. For extra flavor, feel free to add some honey.


  1. Thyme Tea

Thyme can be used to decrease swelling, relaxing the muscles in your throat, and has antimicrobial benefits. The tea is easy enough to make. You either need two tablespoons of dried thyme leaves or a few sprigs of fresh thyme; use whichever you prefer.

If you use the sprigs, you want to mash them slightly with a mortar and pestle. Boil water and it over the sprigs or dried thyme. Let it steep for ten to fifteen minutes, then drink it. If you want to, add honey to give the tea more flavor.  

Thyme, Impetigo

Fresh thyme

  1. Pepper Mix

Pepper is very useful for clearing up your sinuses and airways. If it’s possible, use freshly ground black pepper. Take a teaspoon of the pepper and combine it with a tablespoon of honey and swallow it. If you don’t like the idea of the syrup, you can make it a tea.

If you’re making the tea, you’re still going to need the teaspoon of pepper and a tablespoon of honey. You’ll also need a cup of boiling water. Once the water comes to boil, you should mix the pepper and honey into the water before letting it sit for ten minutes and then mix it again. You should drink this tea twice a day.



  1. Peppermint

This herb is also used to clear up your airways because of the menthol in it. You can drink peppermint tea or put a couple of peppermint essential oils in boiling water and inhale the steam.


  1. Marshmallow Root

This is another plant that comes in a root and can help to sooth a sore throat. You can drink this root in a caspelle or in a tea.


  1. Salt Water

This remedy isn’t referring to the ocean’s salt water, and it isn’t something you want to drink. You gargle salt water to help break up flem in your throat. To make the gragle mix, you stir half a teaspoon into a glass of warm water. Once you have the mix made, you take a sip and gargle it for about 30 seconds before spitting it out. You can do this as often as you need to.



  1. Chicken Noodle Soup

This soup isn’t just a myth that grandma uses for a placebo. The warmth of the broth and the amino acids in the chicken can do wonders for your mucus production. Also, you can add different herbs for both added flavor and for other medicinal uses. Try adding garlic and ginger to help fight off whatever cold or reminisces of the one you might have left.  

chicken, soup, spicy, food allergies

Try eating warm food with many spices, like soup, whenever you have a dry cough or a sore throat

  1. Turmeric Milk

Turmeric can reduce inflammation and it’s an antioxidant as well as an antiseptic. The milk simply helps to coat the throat. Boil a glass of milk and stir in a teaspoon of powdered turmeric. Drink this two to three times away until your cough dissipates.


  1.  Saline Spray

Like salt water, this spray you can get over the counter is to help break things up. It’s easy enough to use; just follow the instructions on the bottle.


  1. Neti Pot

This can be rather scary use for the first time, but it really works for clearing out your sinuses to stop your post nasal drip and it helps to lessen allergies as well. This is another product that you can buy over the counter and follow the instructions.


  1. Avoid Acid Reflux Triggers

Acid reflux is another cause of a dry cough. There are things that you can to lessen it and things that you can do to make it worse. To make it better, you can eat more ginger, veggies, oatmeal, eggs,  white meats, fruits, and healthy fats (nuts, seeds, and avocado).

Triggering foods differ for everyone, so you can experiment a little to see what worsens it, but it’s best to talk to your doctor. There are things that aggravate the majority of people that you can try to avoid to see if it works. Some foods to avoid are high-fat foods, chocolate, spicy foods, citrus fruits, mint, and caffeine.  

Other triggers are smoking, alcohol. Don’t eat a couple hours before bed and take antacids to treat this. To learn more about treating acid reflux, read 34 Home Remedies for Acid Reflux.



  1. Stand Up Straight

Poor posture is rough on your respiratory system. Standing up straight makes it easier for you to breath and might lessen your cough.

sit up, man, working, dry cough

Sit up straight when you are working to improve your cough

  1. Figs

Figs are used globally to fight respiratory issues. You can eat fresh or dried figs, or soak dried figs in water and drink the water and eat the figs.


  1. Air Filters

Air pollutants can cause dry coughs. By filtering and cleaning the air, it makes it easier for your body to cycle the air through your lungs and get it to where you need to go.


  1. Vegetarian Diet

Some meats, because of the growth hormones, can make it harder for you to breathe. So by going vegetarian or at least switching to organic meat, you will have an easier time breathing.


  1. Caffeine

While caffeine is rough on GERD, it can make asthma easier because it relaxes the airways. If your dry cough is caused by acid reflux, avoid caffeine. If it is caused by a dry throat or asthma, try drinking beverages with caffeine in it. However, avoid soda and energy drinks. Instead, use natural sources of caffeine, like coffee and tea.

tea, mango, cup, cough

Drinking mango tea can also treat a sore throat that often comes with coughing

Which of these home remedies are you most likely to try? Comment below.











Cover Photo: https://www.flickr.com/photos/thomchandler/5063528078

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