If you are looking for simple and effective home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections, continue reading this article and find out what they are. But first.
Upper respiratory tract infections (URTI) are very common in springtime. The main causes of these infections are the sudden variations in temperature from one day to another and even during the same day. Upper respiratory tract infections usually affect the:
The accompanying symptoms of upper respiratory tract infections are milder compared to flu symptoms, and rarely does one come down with fever. Influenza, on the other hand, affects the health state of the entire body. Flu comes down with a fever, body chills, muscle aches, and dry or productive cough. Oftentimes the fastest way to recover from the flu is to take a few days of rest in bed. But before we get into the home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections let’s see what are the common symptoms of URTI.
Upper Respiratory Tract Infections Symptoms
The most common manifestations of viral infections of the upper respiratory tract are:
- clogged nose
- dry and strep throat
- pain when swallowing
- runny nose
- general poor state
- fever (mostly in children)
Here are the most effective herbs for upper respiratory tract infections and how to use them, both internally and externally to treat these infections. But before we begin, these are the best herbs for URTI, that are used in various combinations in these 5 home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections.
The Best Herbs for Upper Respiratory Tract Infections
Best Herbs for URTI – Internal Use
- Linden (Tilia europea) flowers
- Elderflower (Sambucus nigra) – infusion
- Willow (Salix alba) bark – decoction, tincture, and herbal wine
- Marshmallow (Althaea officinalis) flowers and root – cold maceration
- Orange mullein (Verbascum phlomoides) flowers and leaves – maceration
Best Herbs for URTI – External Use
- Marigold (Calendula officinalis) flowers
- Yarrow (Achilea millefolium) the flowering stems
- Chamomile (Matricaria chamomila) flowers
- Aromatic herbs: mint, jasmine, lemon balm, basil, and thyme.
5 Home Remedies for Upper Respiratory Tract Infections
The 5 home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections use herbal teas or cold macerations and inhalations made from the herbs below, in various combinations.
1. Herbal Infusion for URTI
Infusion is prepared from 4 herbs: the flowers of linden, elder, marshmallow, and the leaves and flowers or orange mullein. You can use one of these herbs, a couple, or all of them in a powerful herbal mix. Whatever you have at hand. This is one of the best home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections.
- put 2 tbsp of dried and roughly minced herbs into 1 cup/250ml of hot water
- bring to a boil, and when it reaches boiling point, turn the heat off
- let the tea infuse for 30 minutes, with a cover on
- strain and drink while warm
You can sweeten it with raw honey if you please. Have 2 cups of this tea daily.
2. Willow & Marshmallow Decoction for URTI
Decoction, on the other side, is made from the stems of the plants, bark, seeds, fruits, or roots. For this particular decoction, use willow bark and marshmallow root. You can use either one of them or combine them to make one of the most effective home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections.
- add 4 tbsp of dried and roughly crushed herbs to 2 cups/500 ml of water in use an enameled or stainless steel pot
- simmer on low heat for 15 minutes
- strain through a cotton gauze or cotton fabric while it is hot
- add cold water over, to make for the water that has evaporated through the simmering process (in the end you need to have the same quantity from the start)
You can sweeten it with raw honey if you please. Have 2 cups of this tea daily, just as the infusion. This is one of the most powerful home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections.
3. Cold Maceration Remedy for URTI
The maceration is made by soaking herbs in cold water for a longer period of time, in most cases overnight. For upper respiratory tract infections, this particular cold maceration takes less time. You can use all the herbs for internal use, a few, or what you have at hand. If you combine them all, the effect is more powerful, but they have great efficiency even when used alone.
- soak 2 tbsp of dried and roughly minced herbs in 1 cup/ 250ml of cold water
- leave to macerate for 30 minutes at room temperature
You can sweeten with raw honey if you please. Also, drink 2 cups a day. This cold maceration is one of the top home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections.
4. Steam Inhalation for Upper Respiratory Tract Infections
For the steam inhalations, use the herbs mentioned at external use herbs: marigolds, chamomile, and yarrow. These herbs are amazing to use in inhalations, especially if the URTI affects your sinuses and you feel clogged. As simple as it sounds, this is one of the best home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections.
- add 2 tbsp of dried and roughly minced herbs in 1 l of boiling water
- remove the pot from the flame, and use a towel to cover your head while doing the inhalations
- inhale in the steam with the healing volatile oils from the herbs
You can also use the aforementioned aromatic herbs, like essential oils. In this case, use 5 drops of therapeutic grade essential oil in 1 l of hot water.
5. Nasal Douche for Upper Respiratory Tract Infections
Nose douches or irrigations play an important role in the effectiveness of topical treatments for upper respiratory tract infections. Actually, this is one of the best home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections. The purpose of this remedy is to eliminate excess mucus, which creates a thriving environment for bacteria. This mucus is also what keeps us from breathing properly while having an upper respiratory tract infection. These douches don’t need to be too intrusive, you don’t need to use a neti pot. You can use the scoop of your hand to inhale the herbal infusion in, on each nostril at a time, then eject quickly. Imagine doing a “nasal” gargle.
- Make 1 cup of infusion with marigolds, chamomile, yarrow, mint, and thyme.
- Add 1 g of sea salt or any organic salt that you have at hand.
- Allow the tea to cool off at a comfortable temperature.
- Gently wash your nose.
Very important! Adding salt is necessary for nasal washes, to make the tea isotonic. Otherwise, the washes can become irritating for the nasal mucosa and can negatively affect it.
Read Also: Natural Treatment for Viral Infections
We really hope that the home remedies for upper respiratory tract infections here will truly help you out. Stay healthy, naturally!