Honey III (Photo credit: Domiriel)
I always think of a cough as a symptom. To me it is the body’s way to removing material from the lungs and upper airway passages, or its way to react to an irritation. We roughly distinguish two main categories of coughs:
-The productive cough: mucus is coming down from the nose or the sinuses, or coming up from the lungs. It can be caused by a cold, an infection (pneumonia, bronchitis, sinusitis, Tb), chronic lung disease, GERD (gastro esophageal reflux disease), post nasal drip, and smoking.
-The non-productive also called dry cough: can develop at the end of a cold or when exposed to an irritant. Causes can be virus, allergies, irritants (dust, chemicals), asthma, inhaled object (like a pill that goes through the wrong pipe), or even certain medicines such as ACE inhibitors (anti-hypertension treatments).
But you and I know that it is rarely that clear-cut. Very often you have mixed symptoms, or the cough is productive during the day, and becomes dry and irritating at night, or it changes over time.
General recommendations and natural tips:
- Some coughs are due to an allergy. Try to identify the allergen and stay away from it as much as possible.
- Drink plenty of water to dilute the secretions and promote drainage. Warm broths are also very efficient as they hydrate and help loosen the mucus. This is especially indicated when there is post nasal drip. You can also do nasal irrigation.
- Prop yourself up. At night, lie on a couple of pillows. Keeping your head elevated may make breathing more comfortable.
- Avoid alcohol as it can increase the swelling of the mucous membranes.
There is a homeopathic cough syrup: Chestal® Honey manufactured by Boiron
The two types of cough, productive (wet cough) and non-productive (dry, spasmodic cough) require different approaches. A productive cough should not be suppressed, as it promotes expectoration of phlegm from the air ducts. Sometimes thick phlegm has to be “fluidified”. On the other hand, a dry cough can be tiresome and prevent rest at night, so you want to control it as much as possible.
As opposed to most other syrups, Chestal formula can alleviate both types of cough through the relief of tracheal irritation causing dry cough, and facilitating the expectoration of thick mucus in productive cough. As for most homeopathic medicines, it is always better to take it at the first sign of cough.
- It relieves all types of common coughs.
- It combines safe, natural homeopathic medicines with a natural honey base.
- There are 9 Active ingredients, each one targeting a different type of cough or a specific symptom.
- Honey by itself is soothing: it relieves the local irritation by coating the throat. And it gives the syrup a great taste that makes it appealing to everybody, including children. When I have a cough, which is seldom, I sweeten my tea with a dose of Chestal. (If you want to know more about honey, you can read my previous post.)
- Chestal is a day and night solution. There is no drowsiness for the day.
- It’s one of the safest brands of cough medicines. There no side effects or worries about drug interactions or overdosing. It’s one of the few cough solutions on the shelf labeled for children 2 years of age and older. Most products are now labeled for kids 4 and older after the FDA questioned the use of antihistamines, decongestants and cough suppressant in kids.
- Most coughs will resolve in a matter of a few days, so you should see a doctor if a cough lasts for more than 7 days or if it comes back or occurs with a fever, rash or persistent headache. These could be signs of a serious condition.
- Children 2 and younger should also be examined by a doctor before taking any treatment.
- Diabetic patients should be aware that Chestal contains honey therefore sugar, and talk to their physicians about it.
Adults and children 12 years of age and older, take 10 ml every 2 hours. Children 2 to 12 years of age, take 5 ml every 2 hours. There is a dosage cup included in the box.
SINGLE MEDICINES: if you want to treat a specific symptom with sublingual pellets instead of a syrup, there are many different options. I selected a few of the most commonly used medicines for cough:
- For a wet productive cough, you can use those two homeopathic medicines to make the expectoration easier:
Ipecac 6C and Antimonium Tartaricum 6C: take 5 pellets of each every hour
- In order to relieve a dry cough take 5 pellets of each of the following medicines every hour
Drosera 30C, Spongia tosta 6C and Cuprum met 6C.
Read Full Post »