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12 Home Remedies To Relieve Pneumonia Symptoms

Pneumonia is a respiratory infection of the lungs, usually caused by bacteria, viruses or fungi. It occurs due to an inflammation in the air sacs (alveoli) in one or both the lungs and the air sacs fill with fluid or pus, making it difficult to breathe.

The symptoms of pneumonia are cough, fever, chest pain, fatigue, difficulty in breathing, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea.

Antibiotics are effective in treating pneumonia. However, certain home remedies can help ease the symptoms while you are recovering from this disease.


1. Salt water gargle

A warm salt water gargle can help relieve you from the scratchy feeling in the throat. Mucous in the chest and throat can trigger cough; salt water gargle can help get rid of the mucous in the throat, thereby providing some instant relief [1].

• In a glass of warm water, dissolve ½ tsp of salt.

• Gargle the mixture for 30 seconds and spit it out.

• Do this every three hours.

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2. Essential oils

Peppermint, clove, cinnamon bark, eucalyptus, thyme, scots pine and citronella essential oils possess antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that can help fight against respiratory tract pathogens. But, the antibacterial activity of thyme, clove and cinnamon bark essential oil is much higher and may help fight against respiratory tract pathogens [2].

• Add 4-5 drops of essential oil in a bowl of hot water.

• Bend over the bowl and cover your head and bowl with a towel.

• Inhale the vapour and do this once a day.


3. Herbal teas

Drinking herbal teas such as peppermint and eucalyptus tea can help soothe the swelling and irritation in the throat, thus bringing relief from cough.

• In a cup of hot water, place a peppermint or eucalyptus tea bag.

• Allow it to steep for five minutes.

• Remove the tea bag and drink the warm tea.

• Have it twice a day.

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4. Honey

Honey contains antimicrobial, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that can help relieve the symptoms of pneumonia.

• Have a spoonful of honey every night before you go to bed.


5. Lukewarm compress

If you have fever, apply a lukewarm compress on your forehead as it's effective in helping the body to cool down. This will gradually change the body temperature, making you feel better.

• Wet a small towel in lukewarm water.

• Wring out the excess water and place the towel on your forehead.

• Repeat it till you feel slightly better.


6. Vitamin C

Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that plays an important role in increasing the immune resistance to various bacterial and viral infections including pneumonia [3].

• Consume Vitamin C-rich foods such as citrus fruits, guava, potatoes, strawberry, broccoli, cauliflower and cantaloupe.

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7. Vitamin D

Vitamin D plays an important role in the prevention and treatment of a wide range of diseases. It plays a crucial role in regulating the immune system and reduces the severity of pneumonia symptoms [3].

• Eat vitamin D-rich foods like cheese, eggs, fatty fishes, orange juice and dairy products.


8. Ginger tea

Ginger can help relieve cough and soothe an inflamed throat due to the presence of antioxidant and antimicrobial properties in it.

• Chop 1 tbsp of ginger and boil it in a bowl of water.

• Boil for few minutes and strain it.

• Drink the warm tea twice a day.


9. Warm soup or warm water

Drink a bowl of soup as it will help soothe your inflamed throat and provide your body with essential nutrients. Also, you can drink warm water to bring relief from the swelling and irritation in the throat; it will help you stay hydrated too.

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10. Sit in front of a handheld fan

If you are finding it difficult to breathe, use a handheld fan to reduce breathlessness. Hold a fan in front of your nose and mouth for five minutes to help ease your symptom.


11. Steam inhalation

Moisture in the air can help loosen the mucous in the lungs, which will help relieve chest pain and cough. You can either use a humidifier or take a warm shower so that you can breathe in the steam.


12. Turmeric tea

Turmeric contains an active compound called curcumin that exhibits antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that work against bacteria causing pneumonia.

• Boil a cup of water and add 1 tsp of turmeric powder.

• Reduce the heat and simmer it for 10 minutes.

• Strain and add honey for taste.

Note: These home remedies alone will not work against reducing the symptoms of pneumonia. Antibiotics are recommended in the treatment of pneumonia.

Read more about: pneumonia home remedies
Story first published: Wednesday, May 13, 2020, 18:06 [IST]
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