Post-nasal drip refers to a condition in which mucus drains down the back of the throat, often causing other symptoms, such as a sore throat or episodes of coughing. Fortunately, there are several ways this can be treated at home. Many patients prefer to use a natural remedy for post-nasal drip instead of relying on medications or taking time from work to visit a healthcare professional for a condition that is not usually damaging to overall health. Some natural remedies may include lifestyle changes, the use of humidifiers or nasal irrigation, or the use of herbal supplements.
A simple lifestyle change such as elevating the head of the bed while sleeping can be an effective treatment for post-nasal drip. This simple act can help the mucus drain more easily and may prevent throat irritation. Other helpful lifestyle changes include limiting or eliminating irritants such as caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol.
The use of a humidifier is another simple natural remedy. Humidifiers may help to relieve symptoms, such as coughing or a stuffy nose. If possible, a humidifier should be used at home as well as at work for maximum benefits.
Increasing fluid intake is an important natural remedy for post-nasal drip. People should make sure to drink plenty of water, juice, and sports drinks to help thin out the mucus and allow it to drain more easily. Chicken or beef broth can also be a tasty way to increase fluid intake. In fact, almost any soup that is not cream-based can be beneficial.
Nasal irrigation has become a popular way to treat post-nasal drip. Saline drops can be found without a prescription in most drug stores and are generally safe for children and adults. Nasal irrigation kits are also available, although care should be taken when using them. The package directions should be followed closely to avoid damage to sensitive nasal tissues.
Herbal supplements and vitamins are widely used as a natural remedy. Vitamin C is the most popular vitamin treatment and is widely believed to shorten the duration of the uncomfortable symptoms associated with post-nasal drip. Zinc, a mineral, and echinacea, an herbal supplement, are also believed to speed the healing process when taken as soon as cold symptoms begin. It is important for individuals to consult a medical professional before beginning treatment with any vitamin or herbal supplement, as they can interfere with the effectiveness of certain prescription medications.