The symptoms of the common cold are easy to distinguish – first, your throat becomes itchy. Next, you feel yourself getting sleepy and tired, and then comes the sneezing, sniffling, and coughing. At this point, you are fully aware that you have a cold, and there’s nothing much you can do to stop it. The best you can do is deal with it and wait for it to pass. But there are some things you can do to get relief from a cold, nevertheless. Here’s how best to get fast relief from the common cold.
- Rest, rest, rest
The first thing you should do is call your workplace or school and tell them you can’t go in for the day. Your body’s immune system is weak, and the best way you can strengthen your immune system is to get some rest. Rest is necessary – even if you’re not sleeping, simply lie down and avoid doing anything stressful. Take the time to relax and perhaps watch television or a film or read a book. A word of advice, though: if you’re watching television or reading and feel yourself getting sleepy, don’t stave off your sleepiness – just go with the flow and get some much-needed rest.
- Drink a lot of fluids
Your body needs a lot of fluids when you are sick with a cold, especially since fluids help ease congestion and make the mucus thin enough to cough up. Lukewarm water is your best bet, although some swear by hot lemon tea and honey or a good herbal tea (the heat from the tea actually helps ease symptoms like a sore throat as well). Avoid drinks such as sodas and alcoholic beverages and try to lessen your intake of coffee as it is a diuretic and you may end up becoming dehydrated.
- Take a shower
Another way to get some fast relief from the common cold is to take a shower – a hot one, of course. The steam from the hot water can help loosen congestion in the throat and ease any mucus buildup in your nose. If your cold is accompanied by aching and sore muscles, a hot shower can make a big difference.
- Eat some soup
Grandmothers swear by soup for a common cold, and rightly so. More often than not, we don’t feel like eating when we have a cold, as everything is tasteless. But as they say, ‘Feed a cold, starve a fever,’ and if you don’t feel like eating that big piece of steak or that meat pie just yet, you can simply have a bowl of hot soup. Chicken soup is one of the best remedies for the common cold, as it not only gives you energy due to the calories in the soup but it helps reduce inflammation as well.
If you’re still not better in a few days or your symptoms have become worse, it may be time to visit a GP. But nowadays, you no longer have to visit a GP in their actual office – you can have a video call with them through an app for GPs powered by Babylon, where you can be checked by a GP in as little as two hours or less – all through your mobile phone.