Five Home Remedies for the Common Cold

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It’s that time of year where you either are sick, just got over being sick, live with someone who’s sick, or will be sick next week. Hello, flu season! We didn’t miss you. Getting back to 100% can be difficult and doctor’s visits can get expensive, so we found some at home treatments to help us and our wallets to feel better. If you or someone that you know is currently battling a virus, make sure they’re drinking plenty of fluids and getting lots of rest. Instead of reaching for the medicine cabinet, try out one of these at home natural remedies. (Editor’s note: If your conditions aren’t improving after a week of being sick, you should see a doctor.)

Hot toddy

While being sick is the last thing from a party, I’ve found that hot toddies really do help soothe a sore throat from coughing and can help you finally get some rest. Maybe it’s the booze, maybe it’s the lemon but they always release congestion. Plus, they’re so easy to make you probably have all the ingredients in your pantry. Bring water to a boil, add a couple tablespoons of honey, three tablespoons of whiskey and steep with a lemon. You can also steep with a cinnamon stick if you would like to add a little spice. Now, I wouldn’t recommend that you use this as your only measure of cold medicine, but if you find that you’re struggling to sleep because of an irritated throat, then this could be just the trick.

Hot ginger tea

If you’re feeling stuffed up, but not feeling like a hot toddy will do the trick, then a hot ginger tea should do the trick! This drink can help loosen congestion, open up nasal cavities to allow easier breathing and release pressure buildup. The natural spicy quality of ginger is an age old remedy for coughs and congestion. Plus, this is a great way for you to stock up on those fluids that your body is so terribly in need of and it’s so easy. Using a jar that is a quart or larger add 6-8 tablespoons of freshly grated ginger and a pinch of cinnamon. Bring about four cups of water to a boil and pour over the ginger and cinnamon then cover immediately with the lid. Let this concoction steep for 30-40 minutes then using a strainer, pour into a mug. There you can add lemon and or honey depending on your preferences. Enjoy!

Steam it out

Using the wonderful effects of steam can be an instant fix for a stuffy nose and or pressure-filled sinuses. Taking it a step further by adding essential oils like eucalyptus, peppermint, tea tree and/or lavender can all have positive effects depending on the benefits that you’re looking for most. Breathe in steam from a hot mug or bowl with a few drops of essential oils are easy and fast ways to get instant relief. Take it a step further by adding some to a humidifier in your room or take a hot shower to let the steam open up congestion.

Classic cure

Four ingredients have been curing the common cold for generations and it’s one of those happy collaborations that just works. Think of this as the Batman and Robin of home remedies. Those four ingredients are simply garlic, lemon, honey and water. Doesn’t sound too appetizing does it? Not particularly but it really does work wonders for a sore throat and a dry cough. Crush up a garlic clove and place in a glass with the juice of an entire lemon and top off with a couple of tablespoons of honey (you can add more to improve the taste if you prefer) then top it off with warm water. Mix all this together and throw it back (you’re not going to want to slowly sip on this we promise). Repeat this throughout the day for the best results.

Salve saves the day

Home remedies don’t always have to be drank, this chest salve can work wonders for alleviating congestion in your chest and opening up the lungs so you can breathe fully. The best part? You only need two ingredients! Using a half cup of coconut oil use a double boiler to melt this down to a liquid. Once melted, remove from heat and transfer to a container that has an airtight lid. Then add 15 drops of peppermint, tea tree or eucalyptus essential oil, mix together, add lid and let sit until cool and the oil is firm again. Apply this salve to your chest and under your nose throughout the day.

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