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Can A Bar of Soap Stop a Cough or Laryngospasm?

Are you getting tired of reading that a bar of soap can ease muscle cramps? We get it. We frequently write about this remedy. But here are some new soap stories, including laryngospasm.
Can A Bar of Soap Stop a Cough or Laryngospasm?
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We have been writing about the amazing power of soap to stop leg cramps, ease restless leg syndrome and control hand cramps for years. Initially these stories seemed too good to be true. And yet we have heard from hundreds, if not thousands, of people who insisted soap helped control their muscle cramps. And let’s face it, a bar of soap is inexpensive and safe. We never imagined that soap might also help calm a cough or help control laryngospasm. We must emphasize, that an emergency spasm or constriction requires immediate emergency treatment!

A Reader Reports on Esophageal Stricture:

Q. For several years, I’ve had bouts of constrictive esophagus, which meant an emergency trip to the ER to have it “ballooned” (expanded). The episodes became more frequent and the last ones were weeks apart.

Since I’m a long-time user of soap in my bed for leg cramps, as the symptoms began again, I placed a bar next to my throat and the tightening immediately stopped. When I needed help after that, it was always soap to the rescue. Soon the episodes stopped completely. It’s been over three years since that last ER visit.

In addition, my husband had a hacking cough, morning, noon and night. Nothing would stop it. During one bout, I put a bar of soap on the front of his throat, and the cough stopped. I made him a ‘necklace’ with a knee-high nylon stocking that has chips of soap knotted into it. As long as he wears it, he doesn’t cough.

A. We are intrigued by your report. It is quite similar to another amazing story we heard from a person with laryngospasm. That reader also made a necklace to allow wearing a chip of soap at the throat to prevent the spasm.

Here is a link to this amazing laryngospasm story:

How Does Soap Work?

We don’t know how soap would work in such situations, but we suspect it is activating TRP (transient receptor potential) channels in the nerves. That may prevent them from going into overdrive and causing unwanted spontaneous muscle contractions–cramps in your legs or spasms in your esophagus.

Here is a link a more detailed explanation of TRP channels and soap.

Other Stories from Readers:

Joan in St. Louis shared this intriguing story:

“I have difficulty swallowing pills so I decided to put some soap on my neck after reading about the woman with laryngospasm. It worked; swallowing was so much easier. I then decided to try Dove soap for sensitive skin (no fragrance) the next day. It hardly worked at all. I went back to the other soap and have been so happy. I hope it continues to work so the pills do not get caught in my throat.”

Martin in Woodstock, Illinois, loves our Bed Soap:

“Throat spasm is probably closely related to leg muscle spasms. I’ve got to say….Bed Soap is the BEST!! I can, in a state of half sleep, feel a muscle cramp shaping up and lie my affected foot or leg upon the soap beneath my sheet and….miracle of miracles, the spasm ends. I have turned several people on to this and it works for us all.”

You can learn more about Bed Soap at this link. It has extra limonene, an ingredient that we think is especially helpful against muscle cramps. You can learn more about limonene at this link.

Share your own soap story below in the comment section. And remember that any constriction of the esophagus or throat, including laryngospasm, requires immediate emergency medical treatment!

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About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.” .
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