If you're like most people, you've found yourself at one time or another suffering from the common cold, especially when the weather changes. And though this type of viral infection isn't necessarily a cause for alarm, you more than likely want to get over it as soon as possible. It can really take a toll on your day-to-day activities. Most people recuperate within a week or two. But there are a few things you can do to help speed up your recovery time, sometimes seeing an improvement in symptoms within 24 hours.
Of all the things you can do to get over the common cold, rest is probably one on the most effective methods, so get some rest as soon as you feel a cold coming on. Your immune system is essentially in overdrive while fighting this infection, tapping your energy and wearing you out. By taking it easy, you're actually allowing your body a better chance to get rid of the virus.
You may also want to help boost your immune system by taking a supplement of vitamin C. While many people consider this an "old wive's tale," there is some evidence to suggest, according to the Mayo Clinic, that vitamin C can reduce the length of time of your recovery, so take right around 6 g of this nutrient when you feel a cold coming on. You may also find some benefit from taking an herbal supplement of echinacea, which is believed to improve symptoms and speed your recovery from the common cold.
Now that you've take some time to enhance your immune system, switch gears and try to get the virus our of your system.
Fluids can also go a long way to making you feel better. Fill up a large glass with water or juice to help combat the loss of fluids you often experience from the overproduction of mucus. Better yet, fix up a bowl of chicken soup. Not only will this help to hydrate your body, but it can also reduce inflammation and relieve congestion by keeping the virus out of your nasal passages. Mucus actually moves out of the nose at a much faster rate when you eat chicken soup. And since mucus frequently contains the pathogen that is making you sick, getting those "juices" flowing can speed up your recovery.
To increase the movement of mucus, consider upping the humidity in your home. Mist humidifiers work the best, so plug in this device and knock your thermostat up a couple of degrees. This should make the room moist and warm. In as little as an hour, you can feel its effects by loosening the nasal passages and getting that virus out of your system. You may also want to pick up a neti pot to further clean out those nasal passages. Neti pots are essentially nasal irrigation devices that naturally clean and protect your sinuses.