A cold is the most common reason for doctor’s visit. This is especially true for children under 16 years of age. And yet, it has been conclusively proved that a cold is not curable.
The common cold is caused by a virus. Very few people are affected by any upper respiratory infections that are caused by bacteria, and most antibiotics are ineffective against virus. In fact, the recommendation is that people do not take antibiotics, cough medicine, and any other over-the-counter medication. Asprin is definitely not recommended, and children should never be given Asprin when they have a cold as there is a possibility of the cold developing into a much more serious condition called Reye’s syndrome.
There are a number of home remedies that can be used to both treat the cold as well as relieve the symptoms, and below we discuss some of the things that can be done.
Drink a lot of fluids. Fluids are very important, and they help break down the congestion. In fact, using a humidifier is considered very good, because the increased humidity will help relieve a stuffy nose.
Steam inhalation is good for the same reason. Not only the water vapor, but also the heat will help soothe the upper respiratory tract and relieve some of the symptoms of a cold. It also helps to bring up the phlegm from the respiratory tract, helping to relieve the congestion in the chest.
Using aromatic herbs such as eucalyptus oil, especially when inhaled, is good because it helps soothe the respiratory tract. Herbal teas or concoctions are also good at relieving the symptoms of cold.
The most common herbs used in the treatment of cold are pepper, ginger and vinegar. Pepper is known to increase the core temperature of the body and also soothe the digestive tract. It also has a number of anti-viral properties, and it is believed that pepper helps to lessen the extent and duration of the infection. It also eases chills, and the same chemical that gives pepper the heat also deadens the nerve that carries pain messages to the brain, helping to relieve any aches and pains in the body.
Ginger is known to be a natural anti-inflammatory herb and has been used for ages for such problems such as arthritis and bursitis. It has also been used in the treatment of cold because it is a natural antihistamine, and helps relieve the symptoms of cold. Adding a bit of honey and vinegar also helps because honey is known to have anti-microbial properties.
answered by G M on Mar 22, 2013, 6:32:55