Mucus is a substance that coats the bronchial tubes and provides lubrication and protection, preventing foreign bodies from entering the airways.
When you inhale, it locks in dust, allergens, and viruses.
But sometimes the body produces too much mucus, which causes chest congestion and affects breathing.
Let’s dwell on the possible causes of this malfunction and how you can try to reduce this problem to breathe easier.
- 1 What is mucus?
- 2 Why does the body make too much mucus?
- 3 What are the symptoms of excess mucus?
- 4 Risk factors
- 5 How to correct an overproduction of mucus?
- 6 Herbs that control mucus
- 7 Mucus natural treatment
- 8 How to remove mucus?
What is mucus?
Mucus is a substance produced by certain body cells found primarily in the mouth, nose, stomach, and lungs.
Its role is both to provide protection and to lubricate the walls of organs.
As unpleasant as excess mucus may seem, it is essential to us.
The mucus produced by the nose, mouth, or lungs also acts as a barrier to filter dust or chemical particles.
Mucus from the stomach acts as both a barrier and a lubricant for food to be processed.
It is therefore essential to our immune defenses.
Why does the body make too much mucus?
Different causes can lead to an overproduction of mucus:
1- Laryngopharyngeal reflux
This reflux is one of the major causes of the constant feeling of mucus in your throat.
It occurs when stomach acid rises and accumulates in the throat.
2- A post-nasal drip
The process is simple, nasal secretions flow into the throat and accumulate there.
The cause must be identified to treat it, whether it is an allergy or a sinus problem.
3- A respiratory disease
Respiratory diseases such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), chronic bronchitis, and pneumonia are well known to generate that feeling of mucus stuck in the lungs.
4- An infection
It is also possible that your feeling of congestion comes from a virus or a simple infection like a cold.
When you are sick, your body fights infection and produces more mucus.
5- A food allergy
Yes, an overproduction of mucus can simply be induced by an allergy to a particular food and you wouldn’t suspect it.
You need to determine which triggers this rejection: dairy, gluten, wheat, eggs?
Related: How to cure bronchitis naturally?
What are the symptoms of excess mucus?
The main symptoms are a stuffy nose, an accumulation of mucus in the throat, and a constant need to clear the throat.
Of course, other symptoms can declare as:
– a sore throat
– a persistent cough
– facial pain
– temporary hearing loss
– a transient altered taste and smell
You are more at risk of suffering from excess mucus if you have:
- an allergy
- hay fever
- gastroesophageal reflux disease
- a hormonal problem
How to correct an overproduction of mucus?
What solutions stop feeling these breathing difficulties?
It is important to take the medications your doctor prescribes, especially if you have a respiratory condition.
However, you can find over-the-counter medications such as expectorants that thin mucus, facilitate coughing and excretion of mucus through the nose, as well as nasal sprays.
Some decongestants can also help you, but you should know that they are not recommended in the long term because they can have the opposite effect and block the mucus.
Treat your allergy
The seasonal allergy is not just a runny nose, sore throat, or burning eyes, it also causes an overproduction of mucus.
It is therefore essential to treat your allergies so as not to suffer from additional respiratory difficulty.
As you have heard throughout your life, drink plenty of water when you are sick.
And this step is crucial because optimal hydration helps the body to better fight any infection.
Besides, drinking thins the mucus.
Dehydration thickens phlegm and makes it harder to cough up, making the condition worse.
By being perfectly hydrated, the mucus no longer adheres to the walls of the bronchi, which allows it to be eliminated either by coughing or by the nose.
A saltwater gargle
This well-known and simple gargle allows you to get rid of the mucus that accumulates in the back of your throat.
Salt has an expectorant action because it thins mucus.
It also soothes a sore throat at the same time.
All you need to do is mix half a teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water and gargle your head back before spitting the solution out.
Take a hot shower
Taking a hot shower or bath allows you to inhale the steam.
These tiny particles of liquid suspended in the air have a natural action on mucus by thinning them to facilitate expectoration.
All you need to do is chain a few inhales and exhales to allow the wet steam to reach your airways.
Warm steam also helps reduce sinus pressure and lung congestion.
If your environment is too dry due to air conditioning or heating that is too drying, it is advisable to buy an air humidifier (#ad) so your mucous membranes don’t dry out, thus causing an overproduction of mucus.
Pollution, chemicals, and sometimes even perfumes can trigger increased mucus production.
Be sure to note the irritants that aggravate your symptoms to try to avoid them as much as possible.
Cigarette smoke is known to contain more than 7000 potentially harmful substances.
It may initially induce increased mucus production because the body is pushing away a foreign body.
It is of course advisable to quit smoking and not expose yourself to second-hand smoke.
Eat the right foods
Some studies show that certain foods and drinks are very active in mucus production.
– spices like chili or cayenne pepper contain substances that cleanse and stimulate your sinuses
– foods with healthy fats boost your immune system
– some spices are known to limit inflammation (turmeric…)
– fruits and vegetables are excellent allies because they provide a major antioxidant effect
Related: How to relieve cough?
Herbs that control mucus
There are many herbs that allow you to thin the mucus to achieve easier breathing.
Eucalyptus is a tree native to Australia that has many virtues recognized for centuries.
When distilled, eucalyptus leaves produce an essential oil very effective in treating sinus congestion, colds, fevers, and all kinds of respiratory problems.
Eucalyptus contains cineole which has expectorant properties.
It thus treats coughs and helps to thin secretions to better eliminate them.
Cineole also has antioxidant and antibacterial properties that strengthen the immune system.
Inhaling eucalyptus essential oil (#ad) by dropping it on a handkerchief or by diffusing it, doing inhalations with eucalyptus will help you enormously.
Ginseng is renowned for its antioxidant properties that help fight inflammation.
Its action is beneficial for all organs but is particularly recognized in the treatment of COPD, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Numerous studies have concluded that using an organic ginseng supplement (#ad) in addition to conventional treatment for stable COPD significantly improves respiratory function and quality of life in patients.
The roots of this plant contain substances that are very beneficial for the health of the respiratory system.
Its action is to increase blood flow to the lungs, which has the effect of increasing oxygenation of the body.
Osha root (#ad) also has very interesting antihistamine properties to treat sinusitis and respiratory infections.
It works effectively against coughs, sore throats, bronchitis, and colds.
Its slightly anesthetic effect soothes irritated tissues and restores normal respiratory function.
Horehound is a plant in the mint family.
Its leaf is often used in cough syrups found in pharmacies.
It is a natural expectorant that quickly eliminates secretions by thinning them.
The horehound extract (#aff) is also highly recommended for treating allergies, sinusitis, and pulmonary congestion.
Mullein leaf has antibacterial properties that help fight gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria.
Some studies conclude that it even has antiviral and antifungal effects.
It is very suitable for treating breathing difficulties related to colds or any respiratory infection.
A few drops of mullein extract (#ad) in your favorite drink will benefit you greatly.
Mucus natural treatment
Particularly recommended for colds, zinc is known to significantly reduce its symptoms if taken within the first 24 hours.
This trace element has immunostimulatory, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties.
Take a simple week-long cure of zinc lozenges (#ad) as soon as you feel the first signs of a respiratory infection and your condition will be quickly reversed.
Grape seed extract
A grape seed extract has antiviral and antifungal properties.
It is full of antioxidants and is very indicated to evacuate bronchial mucus.
Packed with vitamins and minerals, it is also anti-inflammatory.
Go for a grapeseed extract (#ad) and take it after meals to avoid gastric problems.
Acetylcysteine is a non-essential amino acid that has a mucomodulatory effect.
It acts directly on the gel phase of the mucus to thin it and facilitate the expectoration of secretions.
Acetylcysteine is essential in any bronchial condition and is prescribed by doctors in a systematic way.
How to remove mucus?
All over the world, millions of people suffer from this unpleasant feeling of congestion due to uncontrolled mucus production.
Here you have everything you need to better understand and treat the causes.
You save a lot of time on the treatment to be instituted to relieve your symptoms.
You can opt for natural remedies that are just as effective as conventional treatments and will allow you to overcome the excess mucus quickly.
On the other hand, if this buildup is due to an underlying cause such as acid reflux, it may be a good idea to address this problem first place.