How to Get Rid of Catarrh ••
Catarrh occurs when there is a buildup of mucus in the nose, throat, or chest, caused by inflammation of the mucus membranes. This buildup of mucus is how your immune system responds to an infection. Causes of catarrh vary, but it can generally be treated at home. Things like nasal rinses and cold water can be used to combat catarrh. If you can’t treat your catarrh yourself, seek medical help. A doctor can help you identify underlying causes and prevent a reoccurrence.
Part One of Three:
Getting Rid of Catarrh At Home
Take sips of cold or warm water. Dehydration can make catarrh worse. You should sip water throughout the day. This can help loosen mucus in the throat, lessening your symptoms. Opt for cold water, as this will chill your throat slightly. This can help minimize irritation.
- Sipping water can help ease symptoms like itchiness, which you may be tempted to deal with by cleaning your throat. Clearing your throat can actually make catarrh worse, so sip water when you feel the temptation to clear you throat.
- Carry a cold water bottle with you at all times. This way, if you want to clear your throat, you can quickly sip water instead.
- Keep a water bottle with you at school or work. Make sure to drink water with meals.
Use a saline nasal rinse. You can buy a saline nasal rinse at most pharmacies and drug stores. You can also buy one from your doctor. You can also make one at home by placing half a teaspoon of salt in a pint of water. Let it boil and then use the water when it’s cold.
- Usually, you use a small suction device with a bulb on the end to draw the nasal saline spray in. You then insert the tip of the device into your nose and squeeze the bulb to release the spray.
- You then breathe in through your mouth. The solution should come out the opposite nostril. You can blow your nose to get rid of any remaining solution.
- This does not work for everyone. If your symptoms worsen using decongestant sprays, talk to your doctor about other medications to explore.
Inhale steam. Boil water and then inhale the steam, as this may help loosen mucus in the back of your throat. It can help to add a small amount of menthol crystals or eucalyptus oil to the water. Make sure not to place your face too close to the pot, as you want to avoid getting burnt.
- Young children should not use this method.
Try oil-pulling with coconut oil. Oil-pulling is one of the best ways to get rid of catarrh. To do oil-pulling, put about a tablespoon of coconut oil in your mouth and swish it around for about 10 to 15 minutes. Then, spit out the oil. Repeat this once daily.
Gargle with salt water. Dissolve 1/4 to 1/2 a teaspoon of salt in an 8-ounce glass of water. Then, garble the water for a few seconds. Spit it back into the sink. This may help alleviate symptoms of catarrh.
Part Two of Three:
Seeking Medical Care
Ask a pharmacist about over-the-counter medications. Some over-the-counter medications can help ease catarrh. Decongestants, antihistamines, and steroid nasal sprays can help with catarrh that does not improve with home treatment.
- Do not use over-the-counter medications without consulting a pharmacist, especially if you have health conditions or are taking existing mediations. Some medications are not safe for everyone.
- You can also try Mucinex to help thin out mucus. Make sure to drink lots of water along with the medication.
See a doctor under certain conditions. Usually, catarrh will pass on its own without treatment. However, long lasting catarrh can become difficult to live with. Your catarrh is intense and does not respond to treatment, make an appointment with your doctor. You may have an underlying condition that needs to be addressed.
Rule out and treat underlying conditions. Catarrh can be caused by conditions such as nasal polyps or allergies. If your doctor suspects one of these conditions is causing catarrh, you may be referred to a specialist for evaluation.
- You may have to undergo an allergy test to rule out allergies.
- Treatment depends on the cause of your catarrh. Nasal polyps, for example, may be treated with nasal sprays that contain steroids.
Ask your doctor about self-help techniques. Sometimes, the cause of chronic catarrh is unclear. If your doctor cannot find a clear cause, they may advise you on specific self-help techniques. These techniques will be specific to you and your conditions. Go over self-help techniques with your doctor and ask any questions you have. You want to follow your doctor’s instructions carefully to help treat catarrh.
Part Three of Three:
Preventing a Reoccurrence
Avoid anything that triggers symptoms. Catarrh, especially when caused by allergies, may be triggered by environmental hazards. Try to minimize your exposure to anything that tends to trigger outbursts.
- If you have any allergens you know of, such as pollen, minimize your exposure to them throughout the day.
- Smoky places tend to trigger catarrh, so stay away from areas prone to smoke.
Avoid air conditioning and heaters. Air conditioners and heaters tend to dry out air. This can make catarrh worse or trigger it again after it passes. Try to stay away from such environments.
- If you work in an office that uses an air conditioner or heater, request to sit away from the unit to avoid triggering catarrh.
Humidify the air in your home. Dry air can make you more prone to catarrh. Buy a humidifier to moisten the air in your home. This can help prevent you from developing catarrh again.
- You can buy a humidifier online or at a department store.