How do I Stop a Smoking Cough?

Smoker's cough is a chronic cough caused by smoking. According to the Canadian Lung Association, the only way to truly cure a smoker's cough is to quit smoking. You may experience symptoms such as hacking, painful sensations when you cough, or coughing up blood or mucus. Even more alarming is the fact that smoker's cough may be a sign of a serious illness such as emphysema, a form of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD.

Continuing to smoke will only make your cough worse. (Image: Wavebreakmedia Ltd/Wavebreak Media/Getty Images)

Step 1

Make a plan to quit smoking. If you do not quit, your cough will only worsen and you'll increase your chances of getting serious illnesses such as cancer, heart disease or respiratory illnesses. Pick a quit date and stick with it. Get support from friends and family members to help you quit. Talk to your doctor to discuss nicotine replacement therapy to help you deal with the withdrawal symptoms.

Step 2

Use inhalation therapy with eucalyptus essential oil to ease your cough and loosen mucus in your lungs. Add a few drops of eucalyptus oil to a pot of boiling water. Remove from heat. Drape a towel over your head and inhale the vapors for 15 to 20 minutes. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, eucalyptus is an expectorant that can soothe your cough and sore throat.

Step 3

Take a licorice root extract supplement. According to the University of Maryland Medical center, licorice root extract is an expectorant made from the root of the licorice plant that soothes your cough and helps your respiratory tract break up and get rid of phlegm. You can find licorice root extract supplements in most drug and health food stores.

Step 4

Drink plenty of water. Aim to drink about 68 oz. of water daily, or about 8, 8-oz. cups. Dehydration can cause a persistent cough to become worse. Water helps to thin mucus and loosen phlegm. Drinking water also flushes harmful toxins from your body. You can drink herbal tea or chicken broth if you don't want to drink plain water.

Step 5

Buy a humidifier or a vaporizer for your bedroom or areas where you spend a lot of time. Very dry air, especially in the winter months, can aggravate your cough. Keeping the air moist and humid will prevent irritation and soothe your lungs.

Things You'll Need

  • Eucalyptus essential oil

  • Pot

  • Towel

  • Licorice root extract supplement

  • Humidifier or vaporizer


Always consult your doctor before taking or using any herbal supplement.

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