Stuck in bed with the cold and no end in sight? We’ve all suffered through the sniffling, the shivering, the fatigue and all the other misery a cold brings which seems to be making a comeback this time of year. Being sick is never fun especially if you have responsibilities to keep and jobs to go to; even less so if your job takes you away from home. Whether you’re stuck at home in bed or whether you’re working on the road, it never hurts to learn some tips about how to avoid a cold in the first place, what to do while you have it, and how to try to get rid of it.
Prevent a Cold
Making it through cold and flu season without catching anything should be awarded with a medal. If you know the season is coming around, pay more attention to who and what you interact with and wash your hands after every encounter. Having hand sanitizer handy on a regular basis will definitely help as well. What’s great now is hand sanitizer comes in every shape and size and even with convenient clips on them to attach to your keys, purse, etc. Also make sure to try not to touch your eyes or nose very often since this seems to be the fastest way germs can enter your body. Supporting your immune system is the best way to minimize your chance of catching a cold over your lifetime. Eating a balanced diet and especially staying hydrated are the keys to building up your immune system. Hike up your vitamin C intake as well this time of year for an extra boost.
Treat Your Misery
If the preventatives didn’t work and you’ve caught the cold, there are things out there that can help you at least feel the effects less. While there isn’t much proof that any of these things will actually help you get over your cold faster, they will definitely make it more bearable. Many over the counter drug companies such as Tylenol, Advil, Musinex, ect. carry versions of their medicines that are targeted toward cold and flu symptoms. What’s great about them is they often cover many bases of the cold including body aches, sinus congestion, cough, and sometimes even more. Read each label and match the right product to your list of symptoms. One secret weapon to have if you just can’t get your stuffy nose unclogged is the Afrin severe congestion nose spray. Just don’t use it more than the amount of days specified on the bottle because overuse can make your congestion worse, so use only for emergencies.
Try to Make it Go Away Faster
So the truth is there really isn’t a specific way to make your cold go away faster, but there are some techniques and old holistic healing practices brought to us by our grandmothers which can allegedly help shorten the length of your misery. One old school way of clearing your sinuses is the netti pot rinse. It’s pretty much a little pot you dissolve a salt mixture in water and run it through your nasal cavities to flush out mucus and debris. It can be a little uncomfortable at first, but you’ll see plenty of mucus clearing out after a couple uses. An old family remedy for drawing out a fever was to rub your feet in mustard, soak your socks in vinegar and put them on over your mustard covered feet. Some techniques for getting rid of a cough were to fill a bandana with course ground pepper and honey, or just soak it in liquor and wrap it around your neck.
Whatever your techniques are for preventing, bearing, and shortening a cold or flu are, this is the time of the year to kick them into full gear. Not all of us have the time to lay in bed for a week and recover, so these tips and tricks are here to help you get back out there.