With the cold and flu season on the horizon, many people will have a tickly throat or a cough, a runny nose, and feel under the weather, too. While the flu can be serious for those with a low immune system, have a chronic illness, are elderly, or are very young – a cold can often be treated at home.
What are the stages of a cold?
We can often feel we are coming down with something before it really hits, and there are five stages when it comes to a cold. The cold might last up to ten days, but a cough might hang on for a little while. Days one to three is where you might start to feel a little off; by the end of day three, the cold is usually getting worse. Days four to seven are considered to be the peak of the cold, often with congestion, a cough, runny nose, and streaming eyes, and between eight to ten, you will notice your energy comes back a little, and most symptoms leave.
How can you treat a cold at home?
While we are yet to get a true cure for the common cold, there are plenty of things you can do at home. It is important, though, that you keep an eye on your symptoms, and if anything seems out of the ordinary – it can be worth a trip to urgent care.
Guaranteed to help:
A cure they aren’t but helpful and guaranteed to help are the following:
- Sore throat soothing with hot water and honey, gargling salt, and/or lozenges with lidocaine.
- Drink plenty of water; the body works overtime to remove the virus.
- Rest as much as you can, and take a few days off from work if you can.
- Saline drops are great for breaking up a blocked nose.
- Painkillers for headaches and aches and pains.
- Humidifiers can stop you from getting too stuffy and loosen up congestion.
- Honey is soothing for those over one year old.
- Warm teas, broth, soup, and juice are common across the world to help with releasing mucus, hydration, and soothing.
The common cold is unfortunately not going to go anywhere with antibiotics, so unless you have an infection rather than a cold, you’re not going to get faster if you have them. Some OTC cough and cold medicines might make you feel better, but they don’t shorten a cold or prevent it.
When it comes to children, using over-the-counter medications incorrectly can cause complications, and most often, it is better to use an infant painkiller and nothing else. Your physician can give you exact advice about how to treat a cold and a cough in a child.
It is never a bad idea to increase the amount of vitamin C during a cold, however there is little evidence that it it helps during a cold. Taking vitamin c as a supplement can shorten how long you have symptoms for but won’t prevent them completely.
Starting to feel a little off but not sure if you really have a temperate? Check this: How to tell if you have a fever without a thermometer? – Bibloteka.