When you're unlucky enough to get sick, you're going to want to know how to get rid of your cold fast. Colds are caused by viruses, so it's not possible to treat them with antibiotics and since these viruses mutate quickly, it's impossible to develop a vaccine that will prevent you from getting them in the first place. That means it's up to you to take care of yourself and kick that cold fast. Here are five surefire ways to fight that cold and get back on your feet fast.
Things you'll need:
- Liquid (not sugary drinks)
- Vitamin C tablets
- Saline nasal sprays
- Salt water
- Ginger, lemon juice, honey and whiskey
- Drink a lot of fluids, but avoid sugary ones. A healthy adult should drink between 60 to 90 ounces of water every day and when you're sick, you should drink even more. Fluids help to flush out the toxins created by the virus, which helps you feel better and kick the cold much more quickly. It's okay to drink some juices (especially citrus), but avoid sodas and other sugary drinks. Go for teas and water instead.
- Take vitamin C. As soon as you start to feel sick, reach for your bottle of vitamin C tablets (you keep one on hand, right?). Vitamin C supports your immune system, making it able to do its job more effectively. You can't really take too much vitamin C when you're sick. Aim for averaging about 2,000 to 3,000 milligrams of vitamin C while you're sick.
- Clean out your nose and throat. Colds primarily affect the upper respiratory tract (your nose and throat), so regularly blowing your nose will help make you more comfortable and helps you heal up quickly. Saline nasal sprays are also helpful for beating colds. The salt sterilizes your sinuses and can prevent your cold from becoming a sinus infection (if you get a sore nose, try putting a little petroleum jelly or moisturizing lotion on it). Gargling salt water will help your sore throat and will help prevent throat infections.
- Make yourself a hot toddie. To make a hot toddie, boil some water and make a strong tea with freshly grated or minced ginger, lemon juice, honey and a shot of whiskey. Honey and ginger sooths a sore throat, lemon juice gives you more vitamin C and the whiskey just makes you feel better. Don't overdo the whiskey, though, as drinking too much of it can actually prolong your illness.
- Get lots of sleep. Your body needs sleep to rebuild itself and to fight the cold, so be sure to sleep at least eight hours a night when you're fighting a cold. If possible, sleep 9 to 10 hours per day. You'll feel better and your body will be able to beat that cold fast. If you're not sleepy enough to actually fall asleep, even lying down for a few extra hours a day will be beneficial. Movies are your friend and haven't you been hankering to watch the "Star Wars" trilogy again anyway?
These five strategies for getting rid of a cold fast should have you back on track quickly. However, if your cold lasts an abnormally long time, if you have a temperature above 102 degrees or if you experience sever body aches, you should see a doctor immediately.