Common cold that lasts for a few days can be very annoying and can also cause embarrassment if you have to attend a job interview or participate in a business meet or a social gathering. But it is no longer necessary that you should helplessly endure cold as there are many effective cold remedies available. In fact, most of these are simple inexpensive home remedies that provide instant relief. If you find any one type of remedy less effective or inconvenient, you can always try another.
Drink copious water and you can also consume herbal teas and more preferably ginger ale. However avoid drinking coffee and cola as they contain caffeine – a diuretic that generally dehydrates you. This is the simplest and most convenient of all cold remedies and it does not require you to buy any medicine or prepare home remedy. However, frequently blow your nose or else the suppressed mucus will find its way into the head creating uneasiness and possible headache. It is also suggested that you inhale steam by holding your head above a vessel of boiling water and breathing constantly through your nose.
One of the rampantly practiced cold remedies is to use salt water nasal sprays or clean your nostrils with saline water. This type of rinsing not only helps relieve nasal congestion but also removes virus infection and bacteria from inside your nose. It is recommended that you need to keep yourself warm and take rest as soon as you catch cold as complete rest lends you the necessary energy for developing immunity. You should lie down under a blanket as that will create the necessary warmth.
Gargling with warm salt water is considered as one of the effective cold remedies. Gargling can wet a sore throat and provide instant relief. You can mix half teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of lukewarm water and gargle four times a day. It is still more preferable to try an astringent gargle – for instance, tea that has tannin. You can even use instead a thick, syrupy gargle made of honey. Pour one tablespoon of lemon juice in 8 ounces of hot water and mix it with one teaspoon of good quality honey. Gargling with this mixture is said to quickly relieve congestion.
Interestingly, drinking hot beverages is recognized as one of the proven cold remedies. This helps fight dehydration and soothes the strained membranes lining your nose as also your throat. Before retiring to bed at night, you can have a hot toddy or a cup of hot herbal tea. Otherwise, mix a teaspoon of pure honey in one peg of whiskey if that is your preference. Do not consume excess alcohol as that will aggravate the membranes and prove counterproductive.
A few of the other known cold remedies are taking a hot water bath before retiring to bed. Run menthol or eucalyptus oil or camphor on the exterior of your nose. These items produce a mild numbing effect that will help relieve the irritation and uneasiness. Add an extra pillow beneath your head while sleeping. This will also significantly relieve the congestion in your nasal passages.