Mucus is a diffusion barrier present in your respiratory tract that works against contact with noxious substances, such as smoke, according to Colorado State University. Smoking can cause Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, which causes excess mucus that can lead to frequent coughing, according to the Cleveland Clinic. To clear your respiratory tract of excess mucus from smoking, you must take herbs with expectorant qualities, which, according to Simon Mills in his book “The Dictionary of Modern Herbalism,” help expel mucus from the lungs and bronchi, as well as learn proper coughing techniques. Consult your doctor before taking herbal remedies if you are under medical treatment.
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Boil a cup of filtered water in a small pot and add your dried herbs. Elecampagne has helenalin and inulin, both active constituents that work as expectorants for the respiratory tract. Lobelia also has expectorant qualities. Together, they will begin the process of loosening your mucus. Restrain from smoking a few hours before taking the tea to allow your lungs to rest and the mucus to come out.
Let the herbs steep for three to five minutes. Strain out the liquid using cheesecloth or a strainer.
Drink a cup of your herbal tea 30 minutes before your coughing exercises to help loosen the mucus in your lungs.
Sit on the edge of your bed or a chair with your feet touching the floor and your torso leaning slightly forward.
Breathe through your nose and fold your arms across your chest.
Exhale and lean forward as you press your arms against your chest. Take one short and sharp cough to loosen the mucus, so it can move through your airways and immediately another two to three short and sharp coughs to enable you to cough out the mucus, letting air pass through your mouth.
Sniff air in slowly through your nose to prevent any mucus from returning to your lungs.
Repeat the coughing sequence until you feel that your airways are decongested.
REFERENCES & RESOURCES
- Colorado State University: Mucus
- Cleveland Clinic: Controlled Coughing
- "The Dictionary of Modern Herbalism"; Simon Mills; 1997
- American Lung Association: Improve Your Lung Health