We all suffer from common colds and flu from time to time, and it is always a good idea to visit the doctor when you notice the first signs of flu. The doctor’s prescription of medication can surely control the illness, but there are chances that the symptoms might return.
Thankfully, there are some home-based remedies that offer fast relief from a stuffy nose and soothe your throat too. Nothing can cure a cold, but those home-based cold remedies keep you from feeling miserable, especially when you are running a temperature and are suffering from widespread body aches.
1 Sip Warm Liquids
This is a powerful remedy for the cold that has been used since olden days and in many cultures. Take hot or warm liquids, such as tea, chicken soup, clear broth, etc. Have warm apple juice which can ease congestion and is soothing for you because it increases mucus production and flow.
Warm lemon water with honey prevents dehydration and loosens congestion. Keep drinking warm liquids to hydrate your body and relieve yourself from the cold. However, avoid taking alcohol, coffee, and caffeinated sodas as these drinks can make dehydration worse.
2 Nasal Spray
Another remedy to get fast and quick relief are nasal decongestants. The nasal spray works fast by opening blocked breathing passages. However, use them as directed and under the guided instruction of your physician, as over usage of them can have side effects.
Many doctors recommend the use of saline spray instead of a medicated spray as those have lesser side effects but saline spray acts slower than the nasal spray.
3 Blow Your Nose
Instead of sniffing mucus back into your body, it is better to sniff it out. However, make sure you do things the right way!
For instance, if you blow too hard, germ-carrying phlegm can get inside the ear passages which may lead to an earache. The right technique is to place a finger over one nostril and blow gently to clear the other. Follow this several times of the day as or when you feel discomfort due to the buildup of mucus.
4 Gargle with Warm Salted Water
Warm some water with salt and use it to gargle. This will offer temporary relief to that sore or scratchy throat of yours. The right proportion is to mix a half teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of warm water, four times a day.
You can also try a warm gargle made from tea to calm the tickle in your throat. Warm water draws extra fluid from inflamed tissues so that they hurt less. Moreover, gargling helps to loosen up the thick mucus, as well as get rid of bacteria, allergens, and fungi from the throat. You can also try a combination of lemon and honey with warm water.
5 Place an Extra Pillow Under Your Head
When you have the flu or running nose, it helps to place an extra pillow under your head to get relief from congested nasal passages. If you are not comfortable with the angle, you can place the pillows between the mattresses and let the box springs create a more gradual slope. Do this at night to get a good night’s rest.
6 Breathe in Aromatic Steam
Take a bowl or use the bathroom or kitchen sink, and fill with hot water that has steam. Cover your head with a towel and lean over the steam. You can add some chopped fresh ginger, or eucalyptus oil or any menthol ointment to the water such as thyme oil or eucalyptus oil
Breathe in the steam through your nose for about a couple of minutes. Keep your eyes shut as you breathe in the steam. Generally speaking, 5-7 minutes is sufficient to get relief from congestion.
7 Saltwater Sprays
Give a salty rinse to your nose to thin the mucus and moisten dry membranes. This also helps to get rid of any bacteria or virus from the nose.
One can easily get saline sprays from the drug or grocery store. They are easy to use and completely safe even for kids. Use the saline spray to rinse the nostril and blow out gently. Repeat on the opposite side until there is no mucus.
Saline spray can be bought without a prescription as they do not contain any medications. Use them to loosen up the mucus and prevent it from getting crusty.
8 Chicken Soup
This is a tried and tested remedy for flu and cold. It is certainly the ultimate comfort food when you are sick, and it helps to raise the temperature of the airway that helps in loosening the secretions.
Chicken soup prevents certain white blood cells from gathering and leading to inflammation. It slows mucus production and the hot soup also thins out the mucus. For the extra boost to your chicken soup, add chopped garlic to the soup which kills germs in your mouth.
Apart from following the above simple, tried and tested home remedies for cold, it is important you have sufficient rest. Stay warm and keep yourself comfortable. After all, the fight against the stubborn cold can be tough and taxing. You need all the energy you can for your body to fight the cold effectively and recover.
The above-listed home remedies to get rid of cold may seem common but they are truly effective. There is no cure for cold but quick remedies for a fast relief will help you feel better and is a huge step to recovering quickly.