By Stacy, Contributing Writer

Need some home remedies for a sore throat? Today, Stacy is giving five!

Sore throats are miserable, aren’t they?

Not being able to swallow comfortably and basically feeling that your throat is on fire . . .

That’s something I like to avoid. I’m sure you do, too.

As we head into cooler months, it’s likely that you or one of your family members will encounter a sore throat. Next time a sore throat comes your way, try one or more of the home remedies for a sore throat below to ease the pain:

Pineapple-Cayenne Gargle

It sounds horrid, but pineapple juice and cayenne are know to soothe a sore throat.

In Lalitha Thomas’ book, 10 Essential Herbs, she states that “cold pineapple juice makes a great base for an herbal gargle because the enzymes and acidity of the pineapple juice contribute to clearing the throat of bacteria and unwanted mucus.”

Cayenne also helps clear mucus from the throat as well as increasing circulation to that specific area, which will in turn help fight the infection.

To make a Pineapple-Cayenne Gargle:

Mix up to 1/8 teaspoon of cayenne with 1/2 cup of cold pineapple juice.

Gargle for 30 seconds and spit out. May follow with water, if needed.

Marshmallow Tea

Marshmallow root is excellent for soothing and lubricating a sore throat.

It’s easy to make a simple tea with marshmallow root. Drinking the tea warm adds another level of comfort to a sore throat.

To make marshmallow root tea:

Steep 3 teaspoons of crushed marshmallow root in 1 cup of boiling water for about 10 minutes. Strain out the herbs, mix in a little honey and sip.

This tea may be taken up to three times a day.

Lemon and Honey

One of the most well-known treatments for a sore throat is a warm lemon and honey drink. It’s well-known because it actually helps. Plus, it’s very easy to make.

Simply place one tablespoon of honey in the bottom of a mug, add the one or two tablespoons of juice of freshly-squeezed lemon juice and pour very warm water over the top to fill the mug. Gently stir to combine.

The honey will coat the throat, bringing some relief, and the lemon will help break up mucus.

If you’d like to pump up the antibiotic level of this tea, add a clove or two of freshly minced garlic. It will help kill the underlying cause of a sore throat.

Slippery Elm Bark

The mucilage in slippery elm bark coats the throat, providing relief for irritated throats and coughing. It is a common ingredient in many natural throat lozenges.

Besides soothing a sore throat, slippery elm aids digestion and stomach inflammation.

To be effective, slippery elm needs to stay in contact with the throat for a while. This can be achieved by slowly dissolving a throat lozenge in the mouth or gargling with a combination of slippery elm and water.

To make a Slippery Elm Gargle:

Brew a cup of slippery elm tea (follow instructions here using slippery elm bark for the herb), allow to cool and use as a gargle.

Or, mix 1 teaspoon of slippery elm powder with 1 cup of warm water. Stir to dissolve. Gargle throughout the day. May use gargle warm or cold.

If you’d like to make throat lozenges, this tutorial at Learning Herbs is straightforward and easy to follow. Thayer is a decent brand of throat lozenges if you’d like to purchase some instead of making them.

Warm ACV and Honey Drink

Apple cider vinegar (ACV) has many health benefits, one is soothing a sore throat. I love ACV so much that I drink it every day.

To make an ACV drink specifically targeted at reliving a sore throat, place 1 tablespoon of honey and 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in the bottom of a mug, then fill with hot water. More honey can be added to taste, and also add a pinch of baking soda to cut the acid (if needed).

Sip throughout the day to reduce inflammation in the throat.

What do you use to relive a sore throat?