Having a cold can be quite bothersome, with symptoms like a runny nose, sneezing, congestion, and sore throat making it difficult to go about your daily activities. While over-the-counter medications are commonly used to alleviate these symptoms, there are also several effective home remedies that can provide relief and support your recovery. In this article, we will explore 11 natural home remedies for colds that can help you feel better and get back on your feet.
What is a Cold?
A cold is a common viral infection that affects millions of people each year. The common cold is caused by a variety of viruses, but the rhinovirus is the most common culprit. This virus can be easily spread through contact with an infected person or by touching contaminated surfaces.
Home Remedies for Cold
Here are eleven easy and effective home remedies for cold that you can try to relieve your symptoms:
1. Drink Plenty of Fluids
2. Get Plenty of Rest
Getting enough rest is essential when you have a cold. Your body needs extra energy to fight off the virus that is causing your symptoms.
Resting also helps to reduce inflammation in the body, which can contribute to symptoms such as coughing, sore throats, and body aches.
3. Use a Humidifier
Using a humidifier can help keep the air moist, which can soothe your throat and make it easier to breathe.
Dry air can irritate the mucus membranes in the nose and throat, making it more difficult to clear out mucus.
4. Gargle with Salt Water
Gargling with salt water can help relieve a sore throat and reduce inflammation in the throat.
Salt water works by drawing out excess fluid from the tissues in the throat, which can help to reduce swelling and provide temporary relief from pain.
To make a saltwater solution, mix 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water.
5. Use a Saline Nasal Spray
A saline nasal spray can help relieve nasal congestion and clear out mucus from the nose. Saline sprays work by thinning out mucus and moisturizing the nasal passages, making it easier to breathe.
6. Use Steam
Breathing in the steam from a hot shower or a bowl of hot water can help relieve nasal congestion and soothe a sore throat.
Steam works by loosening up mucus in the nose and throat, making it easier to cough up or blow out.
It can also help reduce inflammation and provide temporary relief from coughing and sore throat.
7. Drink Warm Beverages
Drinking warm beverages, such as herbal tea or warm water with honey and lemon, can help to soothe a sore throat and relieve nasal congestion.
Warm liquids can help to thin out mucus, making it easier to cough up or blow out.
8. Eat Spicy Foods
Menthol rubs, such as Vicks VapoRub, can help relieve nasal congestion and coughing.
Menthol works by producing a cooling sensation in the nose and throat, which can help to reduce inflammation and provide temporary relief from congestion and coughing.
Rub the menthol rub on your chest, throat, and back before going to bed to help you breathe easier and sleep better.
9. Take a Hot Bath
Essential oils, such as eucalyptus, peppermint, and lavender, can help to relieve symptoms of cold and flu. Eucalyptus and peppermint oils can help to clear out mucus from the nose and throat and reduce inflammation, while lavender oil can help to soothe a sore throat and promote relaxation.
Add a few drops of essential oil to a diffuser or mix them with a carrier oil, such as coconut or almond oil, and apply them to your chest or back.
10. Use Eucalyptus Oil
Chicken soup has been a traditional remedy for colds and flu for centuries. Chicken soup contains nutrients and amino acids that can help to boost the immune system and reduce inflammation in the body.
It can also provide temporary relief from nasal congestion and coughing. Add garlic, ginger, and other immune-boosting ingredients to your soup for added benefits.
11. Use Ginger
Over-the-counter medications, such as pain relievers, decongestants, and cough suppressants, can help to relieve symptoms of cold and flu.
Pain relievers, such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen, can help reduce a fever and relieve body aches. Decongestants, such as pseudoephedrine and phenylephrine, can help relieve nasal congestion.
Q. Can home remedies for cold cure the common cold?
Home remedies for cold can help to alleviate the symptoms of the common cold, but they cannot cure the virus that is causing the cold.
Q. How long does a cold last?
The common cold typically lasts for 7-10 days, but symptoms can last up to two weeks.
Q. When should I see a doctor for a cold?
You should see a doctor if your symptoms are severe or last longer than two weeks, if you have a high fever, if you have difficulty breathing, or if you have chest pain.
- Mayo Clinic. (2022). Common cold. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/common-cold/symptoms-causes/syc-20351605
- National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. (2021). Common cold. Retrieved from https://www.niaid.nih.gov/diseases-conditions/common-cold
- WebMD. (2022). Home remedies for colds and flu. Retrieved from https://www.webmd.com/cold-and-flu/features/home-remedies-for-fast-cold-relief
These 11 home remedies for cold are easy and effective ways to relieve your symptoms and help you feel better fast. From drinking plenty of fluids to using essential oils and taking over-the-counter medications, there are many options available to help you manage your symptoms and speed up your recovery.
Remember to listen to your body, get plenty of rest, and seek medical attention if your symptoms are severe or last longer than two weeks.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is for educational purposes only and should not replace professional medical advice. If you have any underlying health conditions or concerns, please consult with a healthcare professional before making any significant changes to your diet or lifestyle.