Natural Remedies used for the treatment of
URTI’s could be either due to a bacterial
infection or a viral infection, as they affect several parts starting from the nasal
turbinate’s, pharynx, larynx, trachea, lungs and to the bronchus. URTI is an infection
that could simply diffuse from person to person in many different ways by
either coughing or sneezing or even through hands contact (Meneghetti,
The respiratory infections occurs more frequently in children, sensitive adults
and in elderly people (Schapowal, 2015). As URTI’s are more
common in the winter season, due to insufficient balance of malnutrition and
the body immunity. Main symptoms for upper respiratory tract infections are:
runny nose, coughing, sneezing, sore throat, headache, nasal congestion, breathing
The upper respiratory tract infection symptoms
could be relieved by using some natural remedies that are found at home or
easily found from plants with several methods such as:
Echinacea is a purple coneflower plant from
the Asteraceae family, essentially raised in North America and Europe used as
preparations for treating common colds (Marlies Karsch-Völk, 2015). It was found that
Echinacea is used in preparations for treating upper respiratory tract
infections as it has an immune stimulant effects where it relieves the symptoms
associated with URTI’s and reduces the risk of recurrent infections (Cohen, et al., 2004).
Honey is one of the best natural remedies in
which many cultures uses in the treatment of URTI’s (Paul, et al.,
Different studies shows that honey has several properties including antiviral,
antibacterial and anti-inflammatory, where it was found to be a good remedy
which is used traditionally in reduci8ng and treating cough (Oduwole, et
According to the WHO, honey has a potential treatment and has several
advantages such as cheap, safe and a popular demulcent which helps in throat
soothe and cough relieving (Paul, et al., 2007). Studies shows that
it reduces the symptoms of coughing in which allows the individual probably
sleep (Meneghetti, 2017). To a lukewarm glass of water add 1
teaspoon of honey with a 1 lemon juice to it or add 1 tablespoon of honey to a
glass of warm milk (El-Kased, 2016). Honey is not
recommended for children under the age of 1 as it has a risk of botulism (Fashner, et
Garlic (Allium Sativum) is another natural
remedy which could be used for upper respiratory tract infections, as it was
found that it may reduce the severity of symptoms of URTI’s, as it was found to
have antibacterial and antiviral properties (P, 2001). It has been used
traditionally due to its effects of either preventing or treating the
respiratory infections (Fashner, et al., 2012).
Humidified air could also be used in the
treatment of upper respiratory tract infections. The humidifier is used for keeping
the air around always moist, is it helps in keeping the nose and the sinus
membranes moist to help in reliving the cough. As dry air is not recommended
for people in this situation as it could worsen the sire throat and increase in
breath difficulties (Arroll, 2005).
Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus Globulus) is a tree
in which it’s leaves and oil is used in medicine. Take some leaves of
eucalyptus and boil them in a dish, and the steam could be inhaled as it helps
in reducing the symptoms of the respiratory infection and if any throat pain (A, et al.,
The oil could also be used for relieving the symptoms of respiratory infections,
where diluting the oil of the eucalyptus and taking it orally to reduce most of
upper respiratory tract infection symptoms including cough, sinus pain, pain or
inflammation of the respiratory tract, etc (C, et al., 2008).
Nasal Saline “Salt Water”, is one of the
natural remedies that can be used for relieving the nasal congestion symptoms (Meneghetti,
It is less cost effective and simply done at home, by taking forth teaspoon of
salt and add it to a glass of warm water, and dissolve it. Inhale the solution
gently allowing the solution to reach the nasal passages, then blow the nose allowing
the solution to be flushed out (Arroll, 2005). Or it could be used
as a gargling solution as it is very popular in Japan, as they believe that
washing the throat prevents and treats the upper respiratory tract infections. And
a study was done in 2003, showing the effectiveness of gargling while suffering
from an URTI (Satomura, et al., 2005).
A, E. et al., 2012. Chemical
composition of 8 eucalyptus species’ essential oils and the evaluation of
their antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral activities.. BMC Complement
Altern Med, 12(81), pp. 33-47.
N., Sutcliffe, A. & Tipper, C., 2013. Feasibility Study: Honey for
Treatment of Cough in Children. Pediatric Reports, 5(2), pp. 31-4.
B., 2005. Non-antibiotic treatments for upper-respiratory tract infections
(common cold). Respiratory Medicine, 99(12), pp. 1477-84.
C., A, F., G, F. & P, Q., 2008. Effect of eucalyptus essential oil on
respiratory bacteria and viruses.. Curr Microbiol, 56(1), pp. 89-92.
H. A., Varsano, I. & Kahan, E., 2004. Effectiveness of an Herbal
Preparation Containing Echinacea, Propolis, and Vitamin C in Preventing
Respiratory Tract Infections in Children. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med, 158(3),
R. F., 2016. Natural antibacterial remedy for respiratory tract infections. Asian
Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine, 6(3), pp. 270-74.
J., Ericson, K. & Werner, S., 2012. Treatment of Common Cold in Children
and Adults. Am Fam Physician, 86(2), pp. 153-59.
Karsch-Völk, B. B. D. K. R. B. K. A.-W. K. L., 2015. Echinacea for preventing
and treating the common cold. JAMA Clinical Evidence Synopsis, 313(6),
A., 2017. Upper Respiratory Tract Infection. Online
Available at: https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/302460-overview#a1
Accessed 30 November 2017.
O., Meremikwu, M. M., Oya-Ita, A. & Udoh, E. E., 2014. Honey for acute
cough in children. A Coghrane Review Journal, 9(2), pp. 401-44.
I. M., Beiler, J. & McMonagle, A., 2007. Effect of Honey,
Dextromethorphan, and No Treatment on Nocturnal Cough and Sleep Quality for
Coughing Children and Their Parents. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med, 161(12),
J., 2001. Preventing the Common Cold With a Garlic Supplement: a
double-blind, placebo-controlled survey.. Advances in Therapy, 18(4),
K., Kitamura, T., Kawamura, T. & Shimbo, T., 2005. Prevention of Upper
Respiratory Tract Infections by Gargling. A Randomized Trial, 29(4),
A., 2015. Echinacea Reduces the Risk of Recurrent Respiratory Tract
Infections and Complications: A Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled
Trials. Advances in Therapy, 32(3), pp. 187-200.