The common cold is a virus-caused infection that affects the head and chest. It can cause congestion in your lungs, stuff up your nose, and cause a sore throat, making it difficult to breathe and swallow. About 50% of all common cold cases hit during the fall and spring.
Most cases of the common cold are mild, and will not require urgent medical care or treatment from our family doctor. To make sure you’re prepared the next time a cold hits, follow the tips on this list.
1. Get Plenty of Rest
When your body is fighting off any disease, no matter how mild, it needs extra rest in order to heal. Give yourself time to spend in bed during the day, and avoid strenuous activity.
2. Drink Lots of Water
While your body is detoxing, you can help flush out your system by consuming lots of fluids. Water works best, but you can also drink fruit juice and tea. Try to avoid sugary drinks while you’re recovering, though.
3. Eat Chicken Soup
It’s almost a cliche at this point, but science does show that chicken broth promotes wellness and healing.
4. Use a Humidifier
One of the worst parts about the common cold is experiencing dry nose and throat. To alleviate this symptom, you can use a humidifier to moisten the air you’re breathing. This is especially helpful in your bedroom at night when cough and cold symptoms tend to be at their worst.
5. Use Nose Drops
Medicated nose drops help relieve nasal congestion and dryness. You can buy nose drops, or make your own by combining one teaspoon of salt with two cups of water.
6. Use Liquids to Soothe Your Throat
Drinking hot tea or warm lemonade can help your throat feel better if it’s suffering from dryness or soreness. You can also try gargling salt water, which many people have found to be quite effective for temporary relief.
When to See Your Family Doctor
It’s probably time to visit your family doctor if you experience any of the following: trouble breathing, significant chest or sinus pain, blue skin, severe headache, or lingering fever.
Common colds generally go away on their own without severe symptoms being a problem, but if you experience any of the above, don’t hesitate to see our family doctor.
Can Legal Medical Marijuana Help Fight Colds?
There are conflicting ideas on whether medical marijuana can help fight colds and the flu or not.
Some studies have shown that cannabinoids suppress the immune system. This can help relieve chronic inflammation, but it’s generally a bad idea when your immune system needs to be fighting off a virus.
Interestingly, other studies find that cannabis can actually boost the immune system when necessary.
Until further research is done on the effects of medical marijuana on illnesses like the cold and flu, it might be safer to stick with more conventional treatments. If you’re interested in using legal medical marijuana, and if it’s legal in your state, talk to our family doctor.
Hopefully this information will help you find relief the next time you’re dealing with a cold. Always remember to seek medical attention for severe or lingering symptoms.