There is no quick cure for a head cold. Most people will suffer at least one each year during adult life. While it is no fun to be sick, unfortunately the illness has to run its course until the body recovers. There are many things you should avoid that will help you recover quicker.
The most important thing is to avoid any medicines that contain antihistamines. Antihistamines work to stop running noses and watery eyes. While this might seem like a good thing, it actually does not help to get rid of the head cold. It only masks the symptoms to bring temporary relief. In some cases antihistamines can even complicate the illness and make it worse. It is important to let your nose run. Blow your nose frequently to get the mucus out of your nasal and sinus passages. Taking antihistamines stops this process and can result in impacted sinus and nasal passages. This can lead to severe sinus infections and ear aches creating additional pain and pressure.
You should avoid drinking carbonated and caffeinated beverages when you have a head cold. Carbonated beverages can cause further irritation to sore and scratchy throats. Caffeinated beverages should be avoided because caffeine works as a diuretic and dehydrates fluids out of the body. Rather consume warm and non-caffeinated drinks.
Allergens should also be avoided. Dust, mold, pollen and pet dander can irritate existing head cold symptoms. Check the air filter on your furnace and if it has not been changed recently install a new one. If you smoke cigarettes or other tobacco products you should avoid these while sick. Smoking will make a sore throat worse. Cigarette smoke contains other contaminants that will irritate the bronchial, nasal and sinus passages. If you do not smoke, you should avoid second-hand smoke.
Avoid consuming large quantities of dairy products. Dairy products will only add additional mucus. Small quantities of milk, cheese and dairy products is acceptable. Consuming about a quarter cup of ice cream to help with a sore throat is fine. But foods that contain large quantities of dairy, like pizza, grilled cheese sandwiches and cream-based soups, should be avoided.
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