To stop coughing, drink plenty of water, use lozenges, drink warm tea with honey, or take over-the-counter medications, such as decongestants and cough suppressants, suggests WebMD. Also try using a humidifier and taking hot showers.
Drinking lots of fluids helps dilute the mucus in postnasal drip, which results from a cold or flu and causes a cough by irritating the throat, explains WebMD. A menthol cough drop can help manage a cough by numbing the back of the throat. Additionally, taking a hot shower loosens nasal secretions and relieves a cough due to a cold, an allergy or asthma.
HowStuffWorks recommends a variety of solutions for those plagued by cough, including drinking lemon juice with honey, chewing a salted piece of ginger, gargling with a salt water rinse, drinking apple cider vinegar diluted in water and drinking lime juice that has had cinnamon sticks boiled in it.
Use a humidifier to moisten the air, prevent nasal secretions from drying out and ease a cough, recommends WebMD. Ensure that the humidifier is properly cleaned to avoid spreading mold and fungus into the atmosphere. Get rid of irritants, such as perfumes and scented bathroom sprays, as they can lead to severe sinus irritation, which creates more mucus and causes chronic cough. Avoid smoking, and stay away from smokers as well.
Check for pseudoephedrine or phenylephrine as the active ingredient when choosing oral decongestants, but be cautious if you have hypertension, as decongestants can increase blood pressure, says WebMD. Try taking cough suppressants and expectorants instead, particularly if coughing causes chest pain and lack of sleep.