Anyone can suffer from the complaint of dry throat that can be induced by weather changes or wind, but chronic dry throat is usually caused due the presence of a disease. Other symptoms that may accompany dry throat include cough, pain in the whole body, nasal drainage, loose stools, nausea, and vomiting and fever. Many home remedies are proved effective to treat dry throat.
Causes of Dry Throat
1. Dry Environment and Cold Air
Dry throat may very frequently occur due to living in a dry environment or due to cold air exposure. Both of these situations can cause dry and arid throat. Due to the use of indoor heaters, which makes the air inside the home dry, the condition of dry throat is noticed more during the months of winter.
2. Food/ Drink Intake
Everything you ingest has to travel through the throat. Hence, while looking at the causes of dry throat, it is important to examine what a person is eating or drinking. Dry throat is often associated with the consumption of diuretic substances such as caffeine and alcohol. These substances cause the body to lose increased amounts of water by increasing urination and makes the throat dry. Dry throat may also be caused as a side effect of a number of medicines.
Irritation is also a very common cause of dry throat. Exposure to dry air can irritate the mucous membrane of the throat and causes loss of water. Irritation can also be caused by exposure to tobacco smoke, dust and other types of air pollution. In persons who develop dry throat due to irritation, the problem is worse in the morning.
4. Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Dry throat may also indicate the presence of an underlying illness such as obstructive sleep apnea, which is a type of sleep disorder characterized by pauses in breathing due to physical obstruction in the airways and also symptoms of snoring and fatigue.
5. Tonsils Problems
Problems in tonsils such as infections, tumors, abscesses or cancer may create swelling of the tonsils preventing the passage of saliva to the throat, hence leading to dryness in throat.
6. More Serious Medical Conditions
Dry throat may also occur due to various other illnesses such as allergies, hay fever, and laryngitis.
- A person suffering from hay fever or allergies also notices other symptoms of sneezing, runny nose and post nasal drip.
- Similarly, a person suffering from laryngitis has presence of dry cough, hoarseness and pain in throat apart from dryness in throat.
- Dry throat may also occur as a result of cancer of the salivary glands (a gland that secretes saliva and keeps the throat moist).
Remedies for Dry Throat
1. Try Herbal Tea
You can also try herbal tea to soothe your dry, scratchy throat as the ingredients present in herbal tea such as chamomile, sage, licorice root and eucalyptus have throat-soothing properties. Another pungent but soothing tea is prepared by simmering scallions and chives in hot water.
Video: Dry Cough Remedy using Slippery Elm Powder
2. Have Hot Drinks
You can relieve dry, scratchy throat by drinking hot liquids such as a cup of green tea or chamomile tea. Both of these teas are excellent to soothe the dryness and irritation in your throat. If your dry throat is also accompanied by cough, addition of a small amount of honey and lemon juice in your tea gives excellent results.
3. Drink Apple Cider Vinegar Mixture
Gargling is the best way to soothe a dry, itchy throat. You can mix a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar with a glass of water and gargle your throat. This solution will help kill the bacteria that cause dryness in throat. To further boost the dryness relieving power of this mixture, add honey and sage to it.
4. Use a Humidifier
When dry throat is caused due to living in a dry environment, the best solution is to use a room humidifier. You can keep a room humidifier in your bedroom while sleeping at night.
5. Stay Hydrated
Staying hydrated is also a good approach to tackle the problem of a dry throat. Water acts as a lubricant and moisturizes the dry air passages. You should drink at least 8 glasses of water every day. You can also suck hard candies and eat popsicles to soothe the irritation and moisten the throat.
6. Gargle with Salt Water
One of the best ways to soothe dry and irritated throat is to gargle with lukewarm salt water.
7. Practice Breathing Techniques
Dry throat may frequently develop in persons who breathe through their mouth during sleep. Practicing proper breathing techniques after consulting a sleep expert is important in relieving the symptoms of dry throat in such individuals.
8. Avoid Caffeine and Irritation Source
To prevent dry throat you should avoid beverages that contain caffeine as it can cause dehydration and further aggravate the condition. Moreover, exposure to irritants such as cigarette smoke, pollutants and chemical fumes should also be avoided.