Chest congestion, which is an excessive build-up of fluid and mucus in the lungs and trachea, occurs when a person feels tightness, heaviness, and pressure around the chest area. It is associated with a respiratory system infection wherein the lower tract swells. This causes difficulty in breathing.
Causes of Chest Congestion
- Common cold
- Excessive smoking
- Heart problems
- Lung cancer
Symptoms of Chest Congestion
- Tightened chest
- Mild chest pain
- Throat irritation
- Runny nose
- Shortness of breath
- Body aches
While it is still very recommendable to visit a doctor for a checkup and treatment, there are many remedies at home that can be followed in order to temporarily relieve chest congestion naturally.
Method 1 – Gargling with Salt and Water
Removes mucus from the respiratory system
Reduces irritation in the throat
- Step 1: Put in a teaspoon of salt (and a pinch of turmeric, if desired) to a glass of warm water and stir until all the salt has dissolved.
- Step 2: Gargle the solution for a few times then spit it out.
- Step 3: Keep on doing the same process every day for about 3 days or until there is no more congestion.
Method 2 – Inhaling Steam
Helps in breaking up and dissolving mucus
- Step 1: Add drops of peppermint and/or eucalyptus essential oils to a bowl of boiling hot water.
- Step 2: Cover both your head and the bowl with a towel, and make sure the steam does not escape to the outside too much.
- Step 3: Deeply inhale the steam for at least a few minutes, while still keeping in mind that it is recommended to stay there as long as you can.
- Step 4: Keep on doing the same process 2 – 3 times daily until there is no more congestion.
Method 3 – Drinking Apple Cider Vinegar
Thins the mucus in the chest
Prevents the occurrence of future respiratory problems by boosting up the immune system
- Step 1: In a cup of warm water, mix in 2 teaspoons of raw, organic apple cider vinegar (and 2 teaspoons of turmeric, if desired).
- Step 2: Drink the mixture twice or thrice a day.
- Step 3: Repeat the process for a week or until there is no more congestion.
Method 4 – Drinking an “Onion Juice” Mixture
Dissolves mucus and prevents its buildup in the chest
Fights against respiratory tract infection
- Step 1: Extract the juice from a medium sized onion.
- Step 2: Incorporate 2 tablespoons of honey, 2 tablespoons of water and 4 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice.
- Step 3: While stirring carefully, heat the mixture until it is lukewarm.
- Step 4: Drink it for 3 – 4 times daily until there is no more congestion.
Method 5 – Drinking Hot Lemonade
Reduces the thickness of mucus
Boosts up the immune system
- Step 1: In a glass of hot water, combine 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice and ½ teaspoon of raw honey OR add 1 tablespoon of grated lemon zest and then strain the mixture after 5 – 10 minutes.
- Step 2: Drink the juice for a few times every day. For the lemon zest option, it may also be gargled.
- Step 3: Keep on doing the same process daily until there is no more congestion.
Method 6 – Consuming Honey
Thins down mucus and eliminates it from the respiratory tract
Fights against infections and viruses
Soothes the congested and swollen area in the chest
- Step 1: Scoop or pour raw honey onto a teaspoon OR combine 2 tablespoons of raw honey and ½ teaspoon of ground black pepper.
- Step 2: Whether mixed or unmixed with water, swallow it for 3 – 4 times a day.
- Step 3: Repeat until the congestion is relieved.
Tips and Precautions
- Drink plenty of water and other healthy fluids to relieve chest congestion and reduce lung inflammation.
- Use a humidifier to help you breathe normally, through opening up the nasal passage.
- Restrict yourself from smoking and drinking alcohol and any fluid that is carbonated to lessen the damages that affect the respiratory tract.
- Get enough sleep, eat healthily and do breathing exercises to ease congestion.
- Rub decongestant salve on desired areas around the chest to lessen pain.
- Keep your head up, literally, while sleeping to induce better flow of mucus and reduce buildup.
- Find immediate treatment to respiratory problems to prevent further damage to the respiratory system.
- Clear the nasal passage to avoid congestion.
- Clean your surroundings and keep things tidy to avoid dust and bacteria.
Never forget to visit a doctor for a checkup and proper treatment.