What is being done to help get mucus out of the lungs? Lung congestion is a common respiratory problem that can cause people to feel short of breath or experience a chronic cough. It’s important to try and remove excess mucus from the lungs because it can lead to infection and damage your lungs if left untreated.
If you have lung congestion, your doctor may recommend using some home remedies for getting rid of mucus in the lungs.
There are several things you can do at home to clear up lung congestion:
Drink more liquids
Dehydration makes it difficult for air sacs (alveoli) in your lungs to absorb oxygen. If you’re dehydrated, your airways will need to do more work spitting out mucus so that oxygen can get in. Increase your fluid intake to help thin the mucus secretions in your lungs.
Use a humidifier
Moist air helps loosen trapped mucus making it easier for coughing up. A cool-mist humidifier is best because it will add moisture without getting too warm and causing discomfort or disrupting sleep.
Try saline nasal sprays and washes
Saline nasal sprays and washes are effective at removing mucus from your sinuses. To wash away dried mucus, try using a neti pot with salt water solution (a teaspoon of unionized salt added to warm water). Sinus irrigation systems are a fast and easy way to rinse mucus from your sinuses.
If you have a cold, coughing is the body’s way of clearing your airways of mucus. Unfortunately, when you have a cold, there is usually too much mucus for it all to come out in one go. The next time you cough up some thick green or yellow mucus, spit it into a tissue or handkerchief instead of swallowing it – that’ll help your body get rid of the excess gunk.
Drinking plenty of water will ensure that the mucus secreted by your lungs is thinner and easier to cough up.
Drink hot tea with honey
Drinking certain types of tea may provide relief for chest congestion. Honey loosens respiratory tract mucus and helps you to cough it up.
Soaking a washcloth in hot water; wringing out the excess moisture; placing the washcloth over your face as you sit comfortably in a chair (with your head tilted back) or lying down (in a position so that your chin is higher than your head), and inhaling deeply for several minutes can help loosen mucus and drain congested sinuses.
Take over-the-counter cold and cough medications
Cough syrups and expectorants may decrease chest congestion by thinning mucus secretions, making it easier for you to expel by coughing. If these don’t seem to work after 2 days, talk with your doctor, as there may be another infection causing your congestion.
Use a decongestant
If you’re having difficulty breathing, have been told by your doctor that it’s safe for you to take a short-term decongestant, and have tried other remedies without success, taking a decongestant occasionally may provide relief. Decongestants can relieve thickened mucus in the nose and sinuses, making it easier to breathe through your nose.
If you do take a decongestant, make sure not to take one containing pseudoephedrine if you have high blood pressure or heart disease; those containing phenylephrine may be an appropriate choice. Some over-the-counter cough medicines also contain a decongestant.
Get enough rest
When you have a cold or the flu, your immune system is working hard to fight off infection. Give your immune system a boost by getting plenty of sleep and avoiding activities that can make you feel run-down, such as strenuous exercise.
When trying home remedies for getting rid of mucus in the lungs it’s important not to drive yourself too crazy trying all these things at once. This could result in either complete failure or an overdose of medication. If one remedy doesn’t seem to be working, try the next one on the list and see if that works better for you.
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