Let’s face it, colds happen. During the warmer months, it is possible to come down with a headache, runny nose, cough, scratchy and sore throat, fever and body aches—all the standard symptoms of the common cold. These symptoms are usually caused by a viral infection.
The good news is that a summer cold will usually clear up on its own within a few days or even a week. And the bad news? A summer cold can still sneak up on you during summer break.
Below is a general outline of home remedies to help you get over the common cold:
Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of fluids and refrain from consuming alcohol, coffee and other caffeinated beverages that can make you dehydrated. Drinking fluids can also help loosen mucus and flush out harmful toxins.
Rest up. Take it easy. It can be hard to turn down plans at the pool or a barbecue you have been looking forward to. Getting enough sleep and plenty of rest, especially while battling a cold, is essential to resetting your immune system.
Add moisture to the air. Adding a humidifier to your sleep space may help with congestion. Steamy showers have the same effect and can moisturize your nasal passages.
Eat smart. A healthy, well-balanced diet filled with lots of fruits and vegetables can help support your immune system.
Try an over-the-counter medication. Over-the-counter (OTC) pain medications such as acetaminophen may help treat a fever, sore throat and headache. Depending on your symptoms, decongestant nasal sprays and cough syrups are also available. Talk to your pharmacist or health care provider about what OTC medicine is right for you.
Although unpleasant, the common cold is generally not a cause for concern. If you have a fever that lasts several days or experiencing shortness of breath, seek medical attention. Schedule an appointment with your health care provider if you have any concerns or questions. To find a provider, click here.