9 Surprising Home Remedies for Meningitis

by John Staughton (BASc, BFA) last updated -

The most important home remedies for meningitis include reishi mushrooms, astragalus, olive leaf extract, chlorella, ginseng, cat’s claw, and garlic, as well as behavioral remedies like proper bed rest, using ice packs, and taking neutral baths in the evening.

Meningitis is defined as an acute inflammation of the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord. This inflammation can be caused by a number of things, including a bacterial, viral, or fungal infection that attacks those particular membranes, and in some cases, by certain drugs. [1]

Treatments for Meningitis

The treatment depends on the type of condition:

  • Bacterial meningitis: There are a number of therapeutic and pharmaceutical solutions, namely broad-spectrum antibiotics and corticosteroids. Doctors may also drain the sinuses or mastoids, the bones behind the outer ear that connect to the middle ear if they have become infected.
  • Viral meningitis: When it comes to the viral version of meningitis, there isn’t a tried and true method, as viruses commonly need to “run their course” and work their way out of a person’s system, relying on the immune system to do its job. [2]

If left untreated, this disease can result in deafness, permanent cognitive damage, and even death, so using alternative methods of treatment for meningitis to boost the immune system is essential. Now, let’s take a closer look at some of the home remedies of meningitis.

3D medical illustration of a human skull suffering from meningitis

Meningitis is an inflammation of the membranes (meninges) surrounding your brain and spinal cord. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Home Remedies for Meningitis

Here are some best home remedies for meningitis including:


Garlic can be very beneficial for those suffering from meningitis as the allicin and various other organic compounds act as powerful antioxidants that have antiviral and antibacterial properties. [3]

Olive Leaf Extract

For a herbal approach to relief from meningitis, you can turn to olive leaf extract, which has antiviral and antioxidant properties, in addition to its proven anti-inflammatory abilities. [4]


One of the most well-known home remedies for meningitis is chlorella, a small plant that packs a major punch, due to its impressive chlorophyll content. Chlorophyll is remarkably similar in structure to hemoglobin, and so, can boost red blood cell production, which increases oxygenation, purifies the blood, and helps speed up recovery and repair of the damage from meningitis. [5]

Bed Rest

Although this seems like an obvious suggestion, the compromised immune system caused by meningitis means that any further (and unnecessary) exposure to pathogens or viruses can make the entire situation even more complicated. Therefore, a patient should get comfortable, stock up on books and movies, and stay in bed until their body can naturally heal. [6]

Cold Packs

The fever that accompanies meningitis can often be quite severe, and it can also make treatment and recovery more difficult. Fevers are a red flag that your body is fighting off an infection, but the raised temperature can be dangerous in and of itself. Regularly using ice packs to keep the fever down can give your immune system more of a fighting chance against the inflammation and infection. [7]

Neutral Bath

When you slide into a neutral temperature bath, your blood will respond accordingly and redistribute properly throughout your body, thereby easing the inflammation and discomfort in the brain and spinal cord, effectively treating some of the symptoms. [8]


The active ingredients of ginseng called ginsenosides are believed to directly act on the affected membranes to eliminate the infection and speed the recovery process of meningitis. Ginseng can be eaten directly or boiled in a tea to enjoy the benefits of this ancient remedy in getting you to bounce back. [9]

Reishi Mushrooms

The triterpenes and polysaccharides found in reishi mushrooms promote a stronger immune system and can help to reduce the dangerous inflammation caused by meningitis. [10]


With a host of saponins and flavonoids, this herb is able to rapidly bring the immune system back to normal and clear up many of the most uncomfortable symptoms of meningitis. Astragalus is considered one of the most effective home remedies for this terrible condition. [11]

Word of Caution: The bacterial form of meningitis is more dangerous than the viral form, but both should be treated quite seriously. The above recommendations are viable options in conjunction with formal medical treatment. In particular, if the diagnosis/treatment is delayed for some reason, more aggressive treatment will be necessary to ensure that no permanent damage is done.

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About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, publisher and photographer with English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana (USA). He co-founded the literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and now serves as the Content Director for Stain’d Arts, a non-profit based in Denver, Colorado. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

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