- A common cold is as common as an old shoe. For some, it is the chilly and foggy mornings that cause the cold and for some, changing seasons cause a runny nose. Winters especially call forth the common cold in many people. It is not just the cold breeze, staying indoors for longer to keep warm makes you an easy target for common cold if someone else in your home has it. Nevertheless, avoiding the common cold is not a piece of cake as the battle is against more than 200 viruses that cause the sniffles. Well, it may not be easy to avoid, but if you can manage it well, you have won the battle already. If you are down with a cold, these six ways can help you overcome the annoying common cold:
- Rest well: Tucking up in your bed with that cosy sweater and the fluffy blanket not just keeps you warm, but goes a long way in battling the cold better. It helps your body redirect the energy levels to your immune system, making your immunity stronger to fight off the virus. So sleep tight and book the cold a goodbye flight!
- Have plenty of fluids: Mucous membranes in the nose, throat and mouth tend to become dry and irritated when you have a cold. Drinking fluids can help keep them moist. Especially during winters, when the weather is quite dry, refilling your water bottle can help soothe your airways. Drinking enough water and fluids also clears the back of your throat, where the constant drip of fluids from the nose cause irritation in the throat.
- Do salt-water rinses: Gargling with lukewarm water and salt makes your sore throat better. It will give your throat temporary relief from the tickles and itching sensation. Mix half a teaspoon of salt in a glass of lukewarm water and gargle for 2-3 minutes. Do this about four times a day. You can also try gargling with honey and warm water. Sucking on lozenges or hard candies can also help soothe your throat.
- Eat healthily: A bowl of chicken soup, fresh fruits or nuts – feed on some healthy munchies because your body needs nutrients to battle the cold that is energy sapping. The key word here is healthy! Say no to the greasy pizza slice and fried foods. Eat foods that are rich in vitamin C like citrus fruits, capsicum, amla, carrots, bell peppers; they are loaded with antioxidants that will boost your immunity and help overcome the cold faster, research suggests. Opting for warm homemade soups like tomato or chicken broth are great ways to soothe the throat, and keep up the strength when you don’t feel like eating. Drinking a lot of green tea, black tea or regular milk tea is a great option too as tea contains antioxidants that fight the cold and is a great mood-lifter when you are in a dour mood!
- Take steam: Steam from a humidifier or hot shower can help unblock your blocked nose. If you use a humidifier, ensure that you clean it regularly to prevent the growth of fungus and mould that can aggravate your illness.
- Stay hygienic: Tissues are a saviour not just for the people around you, but for yourself as well. After using tissues to clean your runny nose, discard them or keep them in a separate bin next to you. Reusing the same tissues will keep you in contact with the virus constantly and will not help you get better. Also, before touching your eyes, mouth or nose, remember to wash your hands regularly with water and soap for at least 20 seconds to destroy the viruses on your hands. Avoid touching other surfaces around you after cleaning your nose to prevent infecting them and spreading the virus to others in the house or at work. If you can’t reach for a tissue/handkerchief in time to cover your mouth and nose while sneezing, you can cough or sneeze in the crook of your elbow to control the spread of the virus.
- If you are down with a cold for longer than a week, you probably need more than just home remedies. Log on to the HealthAssure app and find a doctor near you to get a prescription for your cold. You can also look for a pathology lab near you to check if the viral cold has advanced to a bacterial infection.
Get prescription for your cold on time from HealthAssure and return to full health soon.
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