Natural ways to ease things?


Im new to the forums but looked up where I can get help and after reading a couple of threads on here I feel bad because my asthma doesnt seem as bad as most I read about,

Firstly I havent been in hospital before and frankly didnt know that asthma can be as bad as i have just read,

Secondly my asthma has been pretty dormant for the last few years and only flared up since my GP banned me from chewing airwaves instead of taking real medication (for my asthma and insanely annoying allergy to everything).

So basically I work nights in an active job, but struggle to sleep because my ashtma wakes me up caughing and with a tight chest, so i was wondering if anyone would possibly know of something that helps a bit whilst sleeping?

Thanks in advance :)


17 Replies

  • Welcome to the forum. You might find it useful to make an appointment with your GP or Asthma Clinic Nurse and they should be able to advice you as to why you aren't sleeping very well they might change your medication.

    I hope things improve for you soon.

  • Hi Buzz

    Are you on any asthma meds? I'd definitely recommend speaking to your GP, as it may well be that a low dose inhaler could work wonders for you. Are you reluctant to go on prescription medicaton, is that the reason you're asking for a natural solution? If so, please do consider the inhalers. Because the drugs are inhaled directly into the lungs they're a very low dose and could genuinely change your life for the better :)

  • Hello and welcome Buzz!

    First of all, this forum is for debate, discussion, information and support for all with asthma - from the mildest to the very severe - and those without. If you are worried about hospital admissions, according to Asthma UK 75% could be avoided as seen here Controlling your asthma. Do have a good look around, read the information under 'All about asthma'. Leaflets can be ordered here Publications for the public.

    Secondly, in regards to no medication how had airwaves helped and also how did you manage allergies ""to everything""? What medication are you taking currently? Keeping asthma under control by seeing your doctor/nurse and adjusting these meds as needs be should help minimise symptoms and give you a better night's sleep.

    Natural ways to help ease things are fine as long as they are not a trigger or interact with medication. It is not advisable for anyone to stop medical treatment without discussing with your doctor.


  • When I start to cough and wheeze at night I sit up, lean forward and eat 12 Sultanas one every half minute and try to relax and listen to the radio and it works for me. Another remedy is to eat slowly 4 teaspoonfulls of swiss style muesli dry.

  • Plumstone.....funny...when I wake up coughing I use asthma meds to ease it. I would have thought that eating swiss style muesli dry would be more likely to make you cough! I'm afraid I am, as I have said before...completely and utterly unconvinced that dried fruit or muesli are an undiscovered cure for asthma.

  • I think the correct response for anyone having asthma symptoms would be to use their reliever ... I think tho humorous you post is plumstone anyone following it would be more likely to have worse symptoms than improvement !!!! Or a dose of diarrhoea !!!!

  • Buzz I think you should see someone about an asthma review .. Hope you get a sleep soon

  • I have severe asthma Plumstone do you suggest a higher dose of museli and sultanas or does the dose you suggest suit all?

  • If I had a pound for every suggestion given by well-meaning friends, both online and offline, on curing the cough and/or asthma symptoms that doesn't include a 'please check with your GP', I'd be handing in some size of donation to Asthma Education charities. Perhaps it is the saliva produced on sucking dried fruit that helps you. I wouldn't know.

    What I do know, is this - following half a lifetime of trying every suggestion by friends and in some cases, misdirected GPs, I approached my 60s to find that it was all down to asthma and that my continued annoying cough has possibly damaged my airways with the constant barking. Up to and including the diagnosis years, and still now, I cannot take bacon, apple, muesli, cereals and dried fruit. Potatoes too. That this was a problem did not occur to me until I came away on a week's bus trip and found almost every meal contained at least one of these 'healthy' ingredients. Had to skip courses or substitute with sliced watermelon - hardly a substitute for oatmeal rolled fish or sticky toffee pudding with sultanas.

    Please be careful not to leap in with what works for you with such zeal as to make newbies wonder if their asthma is in fact real. I keep reading posts like that everywhere, not just on AUK.

    I wish you all the best and know who to blame if there is a run on sultanas in Waitrose. :)

  • Perhaps it is the saliva produced on sucking dried fruit that helps you. I wouldn't know.

    That or maybe the concentration on timing leading to better breathing control?

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  • Sorry if I have ruffled a few feathers but David asked for NATURAL ways to ease things?

    No one else has given him an answer. By the way I find sucking an ice cube helps.

  • Sorry if I have ruffled a few feathers but David asked for NATURAL ways to ease things?

    No one else has given him an answer. By the way I find sucking an ice cube helps.

    No-one else has given an answer like yours, no. There may be a number of reasons for this, but I'd go for the following:

    1 - there are no non-medicinal ways that are proven to have any effect on asthma symptoms.

    2 - should Buzz be awakened with a serious asthma exacerbation, your suggestions are downright dangerous.

    In fact, are you being serious or just trolling for laughs?! I honestly can't tell.

  • If only eating chocolate and pickled onions (not together obviously!) were found to help asthma - don't like the sound of dry museli and chewing gum as much! Hope you find something that works for you soon x

  • Hi Buzz, and welcome!

    Please don't feel out of place - as TJ said, there are all sorts of people with all degrees of asthma on here. Everyone is welcome!

    There are lots of natural things that can be tried, though I would recommend checking with your GP or asthma nurse first.

    Asthma, like many conditions, can be worse the more you think about it! I find that listening to music through headphones when I'm very wheezy blocks out the sound of the wheezing and can help me to relax and calm down.

    If you have lots of allergic-type triggers, you might find that a low-histamine diet (ask Dr Google) helps you. Dairy products can increase mucus production, so you could try cutting down on these, especially if you have a productive cough. If you think that this might be relevant for you (or if you think that you have food-related triggers), you can ask your GP to refer you to a dietician for help and advice.

    Propping the head of the bed up a little (or using a wedge under your pillows) can help, especially if you have acid reflux. Your GP can recommend medications if you do have reflux (which can definitely worsen asthma symptoms, especially at night), or you can discuss natural approaches to control the reflux.

    Personally, I haven't come across the sultana/muesli remedies before, but anything that helps take your mind off the difficulty in breathing and calms you down has to be a good thing!

    Some people find that dry air irritates their airways, so putting a little dish of water near to a radiator in winter can help moisten the air.

    Caffeine can relax the airway muscles that tighten in asthma, so strong coffee can help when you're wheezy, but coffee addiction obviously has its own problems!

    I know that you asked for natural remedies, but I would really recommend booking an appointment with your GP's asthma nurse for a chat about asthma control. They are usually pretty clued up about natural approaches (e.g. exercise, breathing control methods, dietary modification, etc.), but will also be able to tell you if you need to increase your medication. The steroid inhalers that are used in asthma are pretty low-dose, have very few side-effects and can be extremely useful in getting symptoms under control. You might find, even if you do need an increase in your medication, that it's only temporary, and once you're back on an even keel your doctor/asthma nurse may recommend reducing or stopping any extra medication.

    Good luck with it!

  • welcome to the forums buzz!

    I have just started doing pilates alongside taking my normal asthma medication to try and help with my breathing, I also do chest physio at my local hospital which I find really helpful. But I think like the others have said the best thing would be talking to your gp or asthma nurse and hopefully you will stat to better soon.


  • Buzz. Let me begin first by saying I agree completely with a natural as possible attitude. With that said, medication was invented for a reason.I went years trying to avoid the ""medication route"" to recover my lungs. Supplements, food, anything and everything. The only thing that helped my asthma was my inhaler. Now, with regards to sleeping I would recommend talking to your doctor about natural supplements such as melatonin. Which, if used on a consistent basis for awhile can bring your sleep pattern back to normal. After that, of course , try to use it more for an ""as needed"" basis since even natural remedies can have their drawbacks. The only other measure that works of course is exercising regularly, with cardio being the most important part of the workout.

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