Chest congestion due to bronchitis can often be relieved by utilizing a humidifier, as moisture helps to loosen the mucus and makes it easier to expel through coughing, according to Healthline. Increasing fluid intake with beverages, such as water or tea, can also help to thin out chest mucus.
Chest mucus can also be relieved with expectorant medications that contain guaifenesin, an ingredient that helps to break up mucus and encourage productive coughing, according to Mucinex. Mayo Clinic adds that it is not recommended to take cough suppressing medications for chest congestion, as coughing helps to remove mucus and irritants. However, cough suppressant medications can be taken at bedtime if chest congestion and coughing interferes with sleep.
Symptoms of chest mucus and discomfort can also be soothed by avoiding second-hand cigarette smoke and taking over-the-counter pain medications, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, according to the Centers for Disease Control. In certain cases, antibiotics may be needed if the congestion is caused by chronic bronchitis or pneumonia. The CDC adds that It is important for individuals with chest congestion to seek medical attention if their symptoms are accompanied by a fever of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, thick, blood-streaked mucus or breathing difficulties.