How to treat common cold?
A person with a cold should drink plenty of fluids and take rest.
- Water and other fluids: Drinking plenty of liquids can help. Water, juice, clear broth or warm lemon water with honey helps loosen congestion and prevents dehydration.
- Salt water: A saltwater gargle 1/2 teaspoon salt in a glass of warm water can temporarily relieve a sore or scratchy throat.
- Saline nasal sprays: Over-the-counter saline nasal sprays combat stuffiness and congestion. Unlike nasal decongestants, saline sprays don't lead to a rebound effect a worsening of symptoms when the medication is discontinued and most are safe and nonirritating, even for children.
- Soup: Scientists have found that soup does seem to help relieve cold and flu symptoms in two ways. First, it acts as an anti-inflammatory by inhibiting the movement of neutrophils immune system cells that participate in the body's inflammatory response. Second, it temporarily speeds up the movement of mucus through the nose, helping relieve congestion and limiting the amount of time viruses are in contact with the nose lining.
- Over-the-counter cold medications: Nonprescription decongestants and pain relievers offer some symptom relief, but they won't prevent a cold or shorten its duration, and most have some side effects. If used for more than a few days, they can actually make symptoms worse. Keep in mind that acetaminophen can cause serious liver damage or liver failure if taken in high doses.
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