By Jenny Everett, SELF magazine
Along with holiday cheer, this time of year brings its fair share of sniffling, coughing and sneezing. So what are the best remedies are for taming cold and flu symptoms?
For a cold...
Opt for a decongestant (such as Sudafed or Benadryl) or an antihistamine (such as NyQuil/DayQuil or a "Cold & Sinus" medication), suggets Amy Arbogast, a CVS pharmacist in Indianapolis, Ind. This will help reduce congestion and block histamines, helping to dry a runny nose and watery eyes and prevent post-nasal drip.
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If you'd rather take the more natural route, nasal sprays such as Simply Saline and Neti pots (click here to learn why you shouldn't be intimindated by them!) are also great for reducing sinus pressure and nasal drip.
Aromatherapy can also be an effective approach to clearing a clogged head. We love the essential oil blends from 21 Drops. The "Decongest" blend includes ravintsara leaf oil, myrrh resin oil, eucalyptus leaf oil and black pepper dried fruit oil -- all of which loosen mucus build-up. Apply a few drops to your chest every four to six hours and breathe deeply.
Your third -- and cheapest -- option, according to Vicki Iannotti, Associate Chief of General Pediatrcis at Maria Fareri Children's Hospital at Westchester Medical Center, is to take nothing at all. "A healthy body can do most of the work itself," she says. However, if the cold has become more pronounced or persists for more than five days, or you have a fever (which could indicate the flu), visit your doc ASAP to see about prescription meds.
For the flu...
The bad news is that if you have the flu, your mostly like have a fever and feel like death. The good news is that the solution is simple: Tamiflu, the only prescription antiviral medication approved by the FDA for treatment of influenza A and B. Get to your doctor ASAP for a prescription! You can also take Tamiflu to prevent the flu, if you find yourself surrounded by sickies.
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Not sure if you have a cold or the flu? Use this Symptom Checker to find out. And, if you haven't done so already, we HIGHLY recommend getting a flu shot. But first, read this: 5 Things You Must Know Before Getting the Flu Shot.
Here's hoping you have a healthy holiday and don't need any of these remedies!
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- Makeover your upper body now!
Photo Credit: 21drops.com