Natural Home Remedies for Post-Nasal Drip

DIY For Your Post-Nasal Drip

Man using humidifier
Patti McConville/The Image Bank/Getty Images

Home remedies for post-nasal drip can help you reduce, and possibly eliminate, the amount of medication you're taking. 

What Is Post-Nasal Drip?

Post-nasal drip occurs when the mucus your body produces becomes abnormally thick or thin, and you become aware of mucus draining down the back of your throat. Conditions frequently concurrent with post-nasal drip include:

When To Seek Medical Care

Post-nasal drip does not always require a consultation with a medical professional. However, you should see a doctor if:

Home Remedy Basics

The following home remedies are helpful in treating post-nasal drip, regardless of the exact cause. You can use some treatments in conjunction with your doctor's prescription, however, check with your doctor first to avoid interactions.

For more information on causes of post-nasal drip and treatment, read:

Aromatherapy for Post-Nasal Drip

Aromatherapists use essential oils to help clear out the mucus causing your post nasal drip and you can too. There are several ways to inhale the vapors, including a vaporizer, a diffuser and putting a few drops on a handkerchief.

Essential oils for congestion include:

  • peppermint
  • eucalyptus
  • fennel

Home Remedies For Thick Mucus

The following home remedies are most helpful if you have thick mucus:

  • Avoid dairy products. While dairy doesn't cause your body to make mucus, it may make it thicker.
  • Drink plenty of water because staying hydrated can thin the thickened mucus. Also, avoid dehydrating beverages, such as anything with caffeine or alcohol.
  • Use a humidifier or take a hot shower. To loosen the thick mucus, breathe warm, moist air.
  • Try an over-the-counter saline nasal spray to loosen thick mucus and clear the debris from inside your nose.
  • A neti-pot (a small and simple device yogis use for nasal irrigation) is helpful in relieving symptoms. While most studies on neti-pots show positive results, at least one study shows regular use of neti-pots may increase your risk of developing a sinus infection. Therefore, you probably shouldn't use a neti-pot regularly and not at all if you suspect a sinus infection or are particularly prone to developing sinus infections.

Home Remedies For Thin, Watery Mucus:

If you have thin, watery mucus, try these home remedies for post-nasal drip:

  • Eat spicy foods, including the chili peppers in Thai or Indian food and the wasabi in Japanese cuisine, because they are expectorants. The spiciness encourages your body to expel mucus and is also known to lift your mood.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Avoid spending a lot of time in cold temperatures -- for example, avoid exercising outside in cold weather. This is because cold weather encourages your body to produce more mucus.

    For more tips on treating post-nasal drip at home, or to share your tips with others, you may wish to read:


    American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery. Post-Nasal Drip.

    Medline Plus. Nasal Discharge. 

    Continue Reading