With the temperatures dropping, we can’t help but to add on those layers and bundle up. But what if that flu bug ends up creeping on you anyway, then what? Study shows that more than 73% of people turn to over-the-counter and cough medications to cure that common cold. Unfortunately, those OTC cough and cold medications might even make matters worse. Some experts believe that the side effects and content (i.e. – Aceptaminophen in Tylenol) from over-the-counter medications can be dangerous and even life-threatening to children and even young adults. So if not medication, what else can one do to put an end to that miserable cold? Using these (natural) home remedies can not only bring relief to those symptoms, but also shorten the duration of the common cold.
When having the cold, it’s common to feel congested and dehydrated. By drinking lots of fluids, such as water, orange juice, and ginger ale solves both problems! Although orange juice cannot help the average person prevent colds, the vitamin C does shorten the duration of your symptoms. Drinking hot liquids like green or chamomile tea are also handy helpers. Liquids help break up congestion, prevent dehydration, and can help ease the passageway between the nose and throat.
Grandma wasn’t kidding when she said chicken soup is good for the soul. This is known as the oldest cold remedy of all mankind, but hey, it actually works! Chicken soup is packed full of vitamins and nutrients that help soothes the misery of colds. Study shows that chicken soup has anti-inflammatory and mucus-thinning effects on the body. Add some noodles to that soup and you’ll also have a boost of energy from the carbohydrates. Something that tastes good and is good for the body? I call that a miracle remedy, yum!
Ah yes, this intimidating remedy. I never quite understood the works to this remedy as a young girl, but now I thank my mother for this remedy each time I encounter a cold. Believe it or not, gargling warm salt helps soothe that irritating scratchiness in your throat. Mix in half a teaspoon of salt in an eight ounce glass of warm water. Gargle for about twenty seconds about three-four times a day. This helps kill off the bacteria in your mouth and temporarily relieves that sore throat.
Remedy #4: Honey
Oh honey, honey! Who knew that we could have our honey and eat it too? Based on the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine suggest that giving honey before bedtime can help sick children sleep better at night. Honey can also help coat and soothe irritating throats and reduce the symptoms of coughing. Next time, be sure to add some honey and lemon to your hot water or tea. (Note: Honey should not be given to children younger than age one, because of the risk of botulism).
Remedy #5: Humidity
Some people think that the humidity might make one more congested and stuffed, but it’s the total opposite! Cold viruses thrive in dry conditions – which explains why the mucous membranes dry, causing a scratchy throat or stuffy nose. Try using a cool-mist humidifier to moisturize your nasal passages and home. Don’t have one of those? A hot shower or steaming water with a kettle or pot works the same. You can add some Vick’s Vaporous or a little oil of eucalyptus to the water, leaving your nose less congested and more relaxed.