Before reaching out for those cold and flu tablets to cure your illness, pause and think. Do you really want to pack your body with chemicals that will give you a short-term relief from flu and cold? The symptoms of these illnesses generally go away on their own within 9-10 days and you don’t really need meds to treat them. But cold and flu medicines can improve your breathing only for the first 24 hours.
Some popular medications that you can do away with.
One of the more popular over the counter medications is phenylephrine but many pharmacy researchers have dismissed this drug as good as a placebo. Phenylephrine narrows down the blood vessels. The nasal passage, as a result, loses its swelling and there is an improved air flow in the upper respiratory tract. Decongestants such as phenylephrine may cause blood pressure related problems in the long run so it is better to consult your pharmacist before popping this pill into your mouth.
Many people take antihistamines to rid themselves of flu and cold but these drugs just loosen the mucus a bit and make your sleep a little more comfortably. Research on antihistamines has thrown up disappointing results. Many people do not know that cold and flu are caused by viruses and not bacteria. Taking an anti-bacterial drug will not help you feel better. Yes, certain bacteria do cause a sore throat but the medicines for this illness are different from the cold and flu meds.
Natural remedies for cold and flu.
Lozenges: Lozenges provide relief against symptoms caused by cold and flu. Most of these are made of zinc gluconate and they taste awful. Most people would prefer having a cold rather than sucking lozenges.
Steamy baths: Cold is often accompanied with a stuffy nose. Our nasal passages are blocked by the excess secretion of mucus. You can get rid of this excess mucus by having a hot and steamy bath.
Inhaling steam: Another popular and low-cost way of treating yourself from cold is inhaling steam. It has the same effect as having a hot bath. The effect of a steamy bath is magnified when a few drops of eucalyptus oil are mixed in the hot water. However, go to bed immediately after an inhaling session and drape yourself adequately in warm clothing to get the desired results.
Honey: Having a tablespoon of honey before going to bed reduces the amount of cough by 20 percent, many people have used this formula to get instant relief from cold and flu.
Cold and flu generally go away after a few days. The best treatment for these illnesses is having ample rest and sufficient hydration.