With the onset of winter , typical infection seen among many-young or old is catching the common cold.
Most people have a misconception of common cold being treated with Antibiotics . However, Antibiotics treat bacterial infections, and cold is caused by virus infection. Hence taking Antibiotics will not treat your common cold – in fact, it will worsen your body resistance to fight it. Hence, do not insist your doctor to prescribe antibiotics 🙂
A preventive approach could be taking Vitamin-c tablets or eating oranges (if it suits your body type) . This helps prevent catching cold ..to a great extent.
Some of the common techniques to fight cold are
Cold Remedy #1:
Use a room humidifier or take steam from open water container or kettle or covered container with a open valve – to help relieve nasal congestion. You can add sinus reliving medication or a few drops of eucalyptus oil to the water if required (Eucalyptus can cause skin irritation, so people with sensitive skin can avoid this). Take a few deep breaths to feel the warmth of the steam..however, take care to avoid burns !
For young children and infants – to avoid burns by spilling hot water, a safer technique would be to create “Steam room” by letting the shower run for sometime WITHOUT THE FAN ON in the bathroom.
After a while, this should create enough steam – sit with the baby in the room and enjoy the steam for about 30-45 minutes!
Basically, Inhale steam 2-3 times a day, to ease nasal congestion and drippy nose. Simply holding your head over a pot of boiling water with head covered by a towel and breathing through your nose can relieve congestion and common cold a lot.
Saline nasal spray, warm shower or a room humidifier will also help to a great extent.
Another technique could be to apply Vicks or any other vaporizer to the child’s feet and put on socks -while going to bed.
Cold Remedy #2:
Blow your nose often, but carefully. This is better than pushing back mucus into your head. The best way to blow your nose is to press a finger over one nostril while you blow gently to clear the other and avoid ear aches and cross infections.
Cold Remedy #3 (not recommend for kids):
Use saline nasal sprays or make your own salt water rinse to irrigate your nose.
Salt-water rinsing helps in nasal congestion, while also removing virus particles and bacteria from your nose.
Saline Nasal Spray recipe :
Mix 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon baking soda in a glass of warm water (use distilled, sterile, or previously boiled water).
Fill a bulb syringe with this mixture (or use a Neti pot).
Lean your head over a basin, and using the bulb syringe, gently squirt the salt water into your nose. Hold one nostril closed by applying light finger pressure while squirting the salt mixture into the other nostril. Let it drain. Repeat two to three times, and then treat the other nostril.
Cold Remedy #4:
Gargle with warm salt water early morning and late evenings.
Gargling can moisten a sore or scratchy throat and bring temporary relief.
You can also gargle with a mix of lemon juice in two cups of hot water; mix with one teaspoon of honey. Let the mixture cool to room temperature before gargling.
Cold Remedy #5:
Drink plenty of fluids to get rid of nasal congestion. Drinking water or juice will prevent dehydration and keep your throat moist. You should drink at least 8 to 10 glasses of WARM water daily. Include fluids such as water, herbal teas. Some warm soups might help too!
Avoid or limit intake of cola, coffee, and other drinks with caffeine because it acts like a diuretic and may dehydrate you.
Cold Remedy #6:
Stay warm and rested. Staying warm and resting when you first come down with a cold or the flu helps your body direct its energy toward the immune battle.
Hope these remedies help in fighting common cold and common misconceptions about fighting the cold.
Stay warm and healthy this winter and enjoy the cold 🙂 !!