Today we take a look at 6 natural cures for a sore throat. These cures have been tried and tested by one of our skeptical writers. Read the results below.
The Much Maligned Sore Throat
Have you ever had an illness that brings on an excessively sore throat? The type of sore throat where every swallow causes a seemingly unbearable pain? Yes, there are few ailments despised as much as the unpleasant sore throat. For the upcoming cold and flu season, I offer 6 natural cures that may help to quickly ease the disagreeable pain of a sore throat related to a cold or flu.
Disclaimer: This article is not meant to diagnose or cure illnesses and/or pain associated with medical conditions related to the throat. You should check with your doctor before starting or ending any treatment. The list below is based on the opinion and experience of one writer and is presented for informational purposes only. Your mileage may vary.
6 Natural Cures for Sore Throat
Here are the cures listed by our author in the order of perceived effectiveness.
1. Apple Cider Vinegar and Honey
Apple cider vinegar has antibacterial characteristics while honey coats and soothes the throat. Mix equal parts Apple Cider Vinegar, honey, and water (about 2 tsp each) and gargle. Try to gargle a little at a time until it’s all gone. After each “round” of gargling, allow a very small amount of the mixture to go down your throat in order to neutralize some germs on the way down. After about 4 rounds of gargling, rinse out your mouth with water, as apple cider vinegar can be harsh on your teeth. In my case, this remedy seemed to eliminate most of the pain I felt instantly, and it remained effective for several hours afterwards. I felt that it worked even better than numbing products such as Chloraseptic. Bonus tip: add a bit of turmeric to the mixture. Turmeric is reported to have some anti-inflammatory properties, and it may help soothe a sore throat.
The Daily Mail has a good article on the health benefits of garlic which mentions its antiseptic traits. Garlic is good for you, is known to have antibacterial properties (read a science study about this here), and has virtually no harmful side effects. If you start feeling a sore throat coming, try taking a garlic supplement. You can also make a garlic tea using fresh cloves of garlic, cinnamon, and a tea bag for flavoring. Our author reported that this greatly soothes the throat.
Don’t have any apple cider vinegar or garlic laying around? Try some good old fashioned mouthwash. Gargle as deep and as long as you can. As the label for mouthwash will tell you, it is designed to kill germs, and it does this very well. Whatever germs may be in the back of your throat should not far well against a Listerine bath. Not to mention, you’ll have fresh breath!
4. Hydrogen Peroxide
People tend to overlook the fact that hydrogen peroxide, aside from being a disinfectant, can also be used as an oral rinse. Containers of hydrogen peroxide often have a message identical or similar to this, “Aids in the removal of phlegm, mucous, or other secretions associated with occasional sore mouth… mix with equal amount of water… swish around in the mouth over affected area for at least 1 minute then spit out.” As the label says, put equal amounts of water and hydrogen peroxide and gargle deeply. Hydrogen peroxide is not meant for external use, so do not swallow. Rinse your mouth with water afterward. Read our article about using hydrogen peroxide in the fight against gum disease here.
5. Cayenne Pepper
Many websites list cayenne pepper as a natural remedy for sore throats, and I found it to be an effective relief. Gargling some cayenne pepper stirred into a liquid is a great and tasty way to soothe a sore throat. Mix 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper into your favorite tea, along with some honey or lemon, and sip or even gargle it.
Zinc lozenges are marketed as ways to cut colds short, and taking a daily dose of zinc is safe if taken for a limited time. While scientific evidence is mixed, some studies have shown evidence that zinc does indeed shorten the length of a cold. One 1996 study found that zinc lozenges significantly reduced the length of symptoms associated with the common cold. A 2011 study covered by Reuters found that taking zinc lozenges as soon as a cold started reduced the severity of symptoms and the length of the cold by one day. If you’re feeling under the weather, try taking zinc lozenges and/or a daily zinc supplement.
In addition to the ideas above, be sure to include supplements that boost immunity and fight infection, such as Vitamin C and Echinacea.
A sore throat related to a cold or the flu can be a very uncomfortable experience. However, there may be certain natural remedies that can be used to bring temporary relief to a sore throat associated with these illnesses. I have tested a number of these potential home treatments for sore throat , and I hope my 6 favorite treatments listed above are of some benefit to the readers of this website.
Have you used any natural cures for your sore throat? Let us hear from you in the comments below.