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Cold and Flu Center

Home Remedies for Coughs & Sinus Congestion

author image Angie Briggs
Angie Briggs has been a health and fitness writer since 2006. Her articles have been published on eHow, LIVESTRONG.COM and GardenGuides. She graduated from Thompson Institute with a diploma as a computer support specialist and received certification from CareerStep as a medical transcriptionist and medical language specialist.
Home Remedies for Coughs & Sinus Congestion
A scarf wrapped around a cup and pot of hot tea. Photo Credit: belchonock/iStock/Getty Images

When you are feeling sick with a cough and sinus congestion, you are likely not feeling well enough to get dressed and go buy medicine to treat symptoms. Some people do not prefer to take drugstore pharmaceuticals. In these cases, home remedies might offer a solution for providing relief from symptoms of cough and sinus congestion.

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Vitamin C

Increase your daily dosage of vitamin C either through a supplement or citrus foods. Vitamin C helps boost the body's immunity and fight off colds. "The Doctor's Book of Home Remedies" recommends taking 100 to 500mg of vitamin C daily.

Salt Water

Salt water can be gargled to ease an irritated throat. Salt water can also be used as a nasal spray to help clear out nasal congestion if there is no saline solution on hand. Add 1 teaspoon of salt to 8 ounces of warm water and mix well.

Hot Tea

The steam from hot tea will help with congestion and the warmth can soothe an irritated throat. Drink tea that contains honey or lemon to soothe irritated tissues in the throat. Honey can also have a sedating effect, which can help insomnia associated with illness. Ginger tea can help fight inflammation in the sinuses and throat.


Steam helps cilia in the nose keep mucous moving through the sinus passages, helping to drain it. Run a humidifier, take a hot shower or bath, drink a hot beverage or eat a bowl of soup to get some steam. Another option would be to pour steaming water in a bowl and lean over it with a towel draped around your head. Be careful not to get too close to the steam when attempting this method.


Spices can help unclog your sinuses by causing your eyes to water and a runny nose.Cajun is a hot spice made from cayenne chile peppers. According to "The Doctor's Book of Home Remedies," chile peppers contain capsaicin which naturally acts as a decongestant and nerve fiber stimulator. Horseradish can affect your body in a way that is similar to a decongestant. Garlic can help thin out mucus and also works to fight off infection.


Being sick burdens the body as it tries to fight off the virus or infection; this makes rest an essential component to quick recovery. Many cold and cough medications cause drowsiness. Adequate sleep allows the body to channel its energies toward battling infections and viruses.

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