11 ways to get rid of a cold fast

by Ahsan Sohail
11 ways to get rid of a cold fast

Waking up with a sore throat, bad cough, and a lot of sneezes is a clear sign that you have frozen. Though many treatments are popular for cold, we still don’t have any therapy or medicine that can help cure a cold and flu. But there are many remedies one can use to shorten the time of cold and get relief as fast as possible. Medicine can help reduce the symptoms of cold, but medications ease symptoms.

Remedies for cold:

Here are some remedies that can help you ease your cold symptoms and make you feel a little less miserable.  

  • Rest as much as you can:

When you are sick, your body requires more energy than average. Take as much rest as you can. Skip work and give yourself some days off. Go to sleep earlier than usual. Spend most of your day by staying under covers. Do not stay up late watching your favorite TV show or going through social media. Lack of sleep weakens your immune system and makes it harder for it to fight against germs. Do not sleep straight when you have a cold. Always use an extra pillow under your head to keep your head higher than usual. It helps with the sinus pressure and makes it easier for you to breathe. 

  • Keep yourself hydrated:

Keeping yourself hydrated by drinking a lot of liquids is the best thing you can do when you have a cold and want to get rid of it fast. Water, juices, and warm teas help in loosening your chest congestion and clears your mucus to help you breathe. They also save you from deadly headaches and exhaustion that results from dehydration. Also, avoid drinking alcohol, coffee, and soda drinks as they make you more dehydrated and causes problems in sleeping.

  • Honey:

Honey works best in treating coughs of all kinds. Studies show that kids who take a tablespoon of honey before sleeping sleeps well and coughs less. You can use it in tea or lemon water as well. Honey is especially very good for kids, but remember no to give it to babies that are less than a year old. 

Gargling with salt water:

Gargling with salt water helps reduce your throat swelling and loosens throat mucus. It is an excellent remedy for treating a sore throat. Gargling at least four times a day with half a teaspoon of salt in warm water can help you get rid of the sore throat within days.

  • Menthol balms:

Dabbing some menthol balms under your nose (not inside the nose), on your chest and throat can help open up your blocked passages and stuffy nose. The menthol vapors provide relief with cough and also helps with congestion. Make sure not to use it on children under age 2.

  • Vitamin C:

Vitamin C does not stop you from catching a cold, but studies show that it can decrease the number of days your cold lasts. Men should take 90mg of vitamin C, and women should take 75mg (other than pregnant women) per day. Research shows that a daily dose of 1 to 2 grams of vitamin C reduces the duration of a cold by 8% in adults and 14% in children. It also makes a significant decline in the intensity of the cold. 

  • Echinacea:

Echinacea is an herbal supplement that boosts up your immune system and helps in fighting against infections. Many searches say that Echinacea doesn’t help in treating a cold. Still, some studies reveal that taking Echinacea at the start of cold symptoms can help in reducing the duration of a cold. Continue it for 7 to 10 days for complete results.

  • Chicken soup:

Whatever moms say, never proves to be wrong. Studies reveal that chicken soup helps in calming your body inflammation. It additionally is great for treating stuffiness, chest pain, and headaches. Moreover, it contains a lot of calories that give you energy. The warmth of the chicken soup can help you get relief from sore throat and fills in the amount of water your body loses with cold. 

  • Sip some hot tea:

This remedy goes by all cultures. Sipping In some warm liquids soothes your throat and relieves the congestion as it increases the mucus flow. Green tea and black tea have some additional benefits of having antioxidants that fight against diseases and can help with cold as well. 

  • Hot shower:

Hot showers are the best remedy to get relief from a stuffy or runny nose. Breathing in steam also helps to loosen the congestion and moistens a dry throat. You can also use a room humidifier for steam. You can fill up your bathtub with warm water and sit in it for 10-15 minutes with lukewarm water still running. Make sure to close the door so the steam does not leave the bathroom. 

  1. Saline nasal sprays:

Saltwater sprays help with dry noses, and one can blow out their nose easily. You can also try with nasal irrigation. Nasal irrigation is spraying a saline solution in one of your nostrils while keeping the other one closed and letting the solution come out of the other nostril after a few seconds. It helps in washing away the dried mucus in your nose, making you breathe easily. If you are making your saline solution, make sure to use distilled, boiled, or filtered water.

  1. Nasal strips:

Nasal strips are another way to breathe easily during night time. You apply these nose strips on the edge of your nose. It helps in making a passage through your stuffy nose to help your breath. Remember, it does not help with the stuffy nose but makes way for air to flow in and out, helping you breathe. 

For how long cold symptoms last?

Typically cold symptoms last for a week. The first three days of cold are the most difficult ones, and at that time, you are incredibly contagious. You are most likely to spread your cold to others in the first three days of your cold symptoms. So have some worry about others too and skip work for a few days and stay home. Take complete bed rest and treat yourself kindly. 

Even after a week, if your cold symptoms have not gone, then it might be possible that you have a bacterial infection. And it would be best if you had antibiotics to get rid of this. In this case, you should consult a doctor and ask him to prescribe you some antibiotics for the virus. Do not delay your condition anymore because it can get worse if you do not treat properly.

How can we differentiate between cold and flu?

Cold and flu both look alike, but there is a slight difference between these two. Both are caused by viruses but different kinds of viruses. About 200 types of infections can cause cold, while, on the other hand, viruses causing flu are a handful. A person stats developing cold symptoms gradually while flu symptoms occur all of a sudden without any warning. Moreover, flu is much more severe in intensity compared to cold.

What are the symptoms of a cold?

Not everyone has the same symptoms of a cold. Cold symptoms vary from person to person. The symptoms of cold usually start showing up on the third day, from exposure to a cold virus. Mostly cold symptoms are at its peak till four days and take at least seven days to go away. 

The symptoms of cold develop gradually. The most common signs of cold are when a person cannot stop sneezing or coughing, have a runny nose, experience severe headache, nose congestion or nose stuffiness, and feel pain in the throat.  Usually, a cold takes about 7 to 10 days to recover fully. But the time to get rid of cold is different among different people. Some people might have a cold for more extended times because of their weak immune system or any health problem. 

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