Six cold remedies that work
This is your permission slip to take a guilt-free nap. As much as possible, as often as possible, get some rest. Sleeping with a runny nose can be challenging. Prop yourself up with a few pillows to help facilitate breathing.
Stuffy noses are no fun. Try using nasal sprays to increase moisture in your nostrils. This also helps thin and flush out sinus mucus. There are several over-the-counter saline sprays that help relieve stuffiness in adults and children. Always check with your pediatrician before administering any medications to children.
Soothe sore throats
When it hurts to swallow, you need fast relief. For some, popsicles and cold beverages do the trick. For others, it’s hot tea with honey all the way. And then there’s the old gargle with salt water trick: 8 ounces of warm water mixed with a quarter teaspoon of salt. When your throat is really scratchy, give throat sprays and lozenges a try.
Take pain relievers
Unless there’s a specific medical reason you should avoid them, ibuprofen and acetaminophen can help relieve head and body aches. Ibuprofen is an anti-inflammatory, which means it helps reduce fevers and pain. Acetaminophen is known to help more with headaches. Alternating doses of each medication may work well, yet do not take these pain relievers at the same time. As always, follow package directions.
You may crave the pick-me-up of your favorite soda or coffee when a cold is keeping you down, but when you’re under the weather, it’s better for you to steer clear of all things loaded with caffeine. Water, juice and broth will not only keep you hydrated, they’ll assist in loosening congestion. It’s also best to avoid alcohol, which can also dehydrate rather than help in healing.
Grandma was right about this one, and if you have her recipe for chicken soup, even better. Combine chicken, broth and veggies to help boost the immune system. Researchers at the Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha found that these ingredients in tandem fight bronchial inflammation—AKA coughs and congestion.