istock/Image-SourceWhether it’s flu season or you’re fighting off an icky summer cold, throat lozenges are one of the go-to items you may find yourself reaching for at the pharmacy. There are plenty of different flavors and brands to choose from, so it’s important to be strategic about choosing the right throat lozenges to relieve your throat symptoms. We checked in with Jamin Brahmbhatt, MD, to find out which ingredients to look for and which to avoid. Plus, he let us in on a few at-home remedies.
While your sore throat or cough will likely heal on its own over time, Dr. Brahmbhatt says, there are remedies to alleviate the pain and discomfort caused by bacterial or viral infections. “Lozenges work by increasing saliva production to help keep the throat moist.” So, while they won’t cure a sore throat, lozenges can definitely soothe some pretty pesky sore throat symptoms.
Which throat lozenges work best?
It’s important not to reach for just any throat lozenges. “Opt for sugar-free lozenges,” Dr. Brahmbhatt says. “Cough drops contain about 15 calories each and those calories can add up fast!” His pick is sugar-free menthol-based drops.
At-home remedies for a sore throat or cough
- Stay hydrated. The more water and fluids you take in, the higher chance you have that your throat will stay moist.
- Chew on cloves and gargle with salt water: You’ll feel a huge relief!
- Try turmeric. Gargle with turmeric to reduce inflammation in the throat.
Throat lozenges can be effective when it comes to relieving your symptoms, and if you reach for a menthol-based brand, you’re in good shape. As annoying as it is to be under the weather with a sore throat, it’s important to remember that it’s a temporary condition and something as simple as drinking water could make a difference in the way you feel as you pass the time and get closer to feeling back to normal.