Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"What are some natural remedies for the common cold?"
I'm 25 and I've nevr taken cough medicine. Are there any natural remedies I should try? Any foods?
The common cold is, unfortunately, very common. The good news is that it is usually self limited, meaning that you should start to feel better soon without any medications or other needs. The best things for treating it are supportive care, which is the way that doctors describe the things that your mom always used to do for you: chicken soup (and other warm, thin liquids that can help thin the mucus and help your throat to feel better), plenty of sleep, and lots of washing your hands. For some, a low dose of an over the counter pain medication such as tylenol or ibuprofen can help for a day or two. If your symptoms don't start to improve after a couple of days, or if you have a high fever or other concerning symptoms, speaking with your primary care doctor is in order to see if there is anything else going on that is causing your symptoms. Otherwise, your colleagues and friends will appreciate it if you exercise meticulous hand hygiene, cover your coughs, and even take a day or two off of your normal rotation and activities so that you don't share the virus that is causing your misery.
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