Well it seems that I’ve come down with a bit of a head cold. I felt it creeping up on me last week and have been trying to fight it, but alas I woke up this morning with a major headache coupled with pain behind my eyes, sinus pressure, and a runny nose. Blah.
It’s no fun being sick, but I have a surefire strategy to help me get over this cold quick. It’s time to bust out my headcold home remedies.
But first, let’s talk a bit about head colds. A head cold is a viral infection of the upper respiratory tract. The virus settles in the mucus membranes of the nose and is usually paired with congestion, sneezing, and a headache. It is sometimes referred to as a “common cold,” and it is a very frequently seen in the winter months in many regions of the world. It is usually harmless, but can create several days of discomfort and fatigue.
The mucus which drains from the nose is typically clear in color, but if it becomes yellow or greenish, this could suggest that you’ve developed a sinus infection. In which case, see my sinus infection home remedy post.
To prevent your cold from turning into a secondary bacterial infection and help your body recover quickly, follow my tips below.
1. Hot Fluids
It’s important when you have a cold to consume a lot of fluids and it feels good to have something warm when you are not feeling well. Not only does it feel soothing, but hot fluids help increase the movement of nasal mucus and help to soften and relax inflamed nasal passages. My favorite home remedy is a cold and flu brew tea which contains chamomile, eucalyptus, peppermint, orange peel, yarrow flowers, and elderflowers.
2. Nasal Saline Spray
When you have a stuffy nose and it’s inconvenient to do a netti pot, having a nasal saline spray on hand will help keep your nasal passages moist and lessen inflammation of the mucus membranes. Just make sure that when you purchase one that it is says natural saline and does not contain a steroid. I like the nasal spray that Nutribiotic makes because it is natural saline combine with grapefruit seed extract, an antimicrobial and prevent or help clear up a sinus infection.
3. Netti Pot
The netti pot is my go to whenever I have a head cold. It alleviates sinus congestion, pain, and pressure without having to take any medication. A few years ago, I had really bad allergies and would get numerous sinus infections, one year I think I had 5. Each time I got one, I would feel miserable and go to the doctor for another round of antibiotics. Each round lasted three weeks and I have to take what looked like huge horse pills-yuck! I started researching natural sinus infection remedies and the netti pot kept popping up everywhere. I decided to try it and while it took me a while to get used to doing it, I haven’t had a sinus infection since. See my post sinus infection home remedy for more information about doing a netti pot.
4. Vitamin C
On average, researchers have found the taking extra vitamin C helps reduce the length of your cold by one day.
Okay, this may seem like it is a no brainer, but it really is important to take it easy when your body is battling a virus. Also, it’s best to avoid OTCs like Dayquil that temporarily make you feel better. What your body really needs is extra sleep to help rebuild and recharge. So take the time to nurture yourself and find a nice cushy seat on the couch.