The simple cold is the most common cause of illness in both children and adults, and it is usually caused by a virus. You or a family member may have experienced a cold at some point in your life, especially during the cold, winter months where viruses are more prevalent because of the weather change. It is also in these cooler months that people tend to stay indoors and are, therefore, in closer contact with each other.
But you don’t need to wait for the winter to learn all about these five simple remedies for the common cold:
- Drink lots of water. Whether you already have a cold or not, it’s very important to keep yourself hydrated during the cold, winter months. Getting plenty of fluids into your body doesn’t only make your throat moist and help with your congestion, but it also does many other wonders to keep your body healthy during the cold season. You can also mix it up by drinking herbal teas, ginger ale or even some chicken soup to make you feel better.
- Blow your nose gently. Nasal congestion can be such a hassle that you need to blow your nose to relieve your congestion and avoid sniffling mucus that could cause more infections. To blow your nose properly, you need to simply press your finger over one nostril and blow the other nostril gently to clear the mucus inside. Never blow your nose hard, as it can cause earaches.
- Load up on your vitamin C. It doesn’t matter if it’s the cold season or not. You need to load up on vitamin C to protect your body against different illnesses. Aside from taking vitamin supplements, you should also incorporate vitamin C-rich fruits into your diets such as oranges, lemons and leafy greens. And if you have a cold, you can add some fresh lemon juice to your hot tea or drink fresh lemonade to relieve your congestion and reduce phlegm.
- Gargle with saltwater. Saltwater is one of the best remedies for sore throat and nasal congestions because it helps to reduce and loosen mucus that contains allergens and bacteria. Simply dissolve 1 teaspoon of table salt in a glass of warm water and use it as a gargle.
- Use steam. Before there were any decongestants, people used steam to treat stuffy noses due to colds. Just boil some water in a pot and hold your head over it so you can breathe the steam into your nose and loosen up mucus. If you don’t want to go traditional, you can also buy a humidifier or take a hot shower while keeping the door closed so you can inhale some of that steam.
Of course, you can’t forget to stock up on cold and flu tablets that will surely help you deal with your stubborn cold. Having these medications at home will make it easier for you to treat members of the family who are going through a cold to prevent the virus from spreading further in your household.