The Bad News: there is no cure for the common cold, and the flu typically lasts from one to two weeks.
The Good News: There are some remedies that actually work, help with the symptoms, and make you feel better a lot faster. Find out what’s proven to work.
1) Theraflu: OTC Multi-Symptom Cold & Flu Remedies
The first one worth mentioning is Theraflu Multi-Symptom Severe Cold. The box comes with 6 packages for daytime and 6 for nighttime. It helps with most of the cold and flu symptoms and relieves aches and pains. Just dissolve the contents of one packet into 8 oz. of hot water and sip while it’s still hot. The taste is actually really good; it tastes like tea with lemon. This option is great for those of you who hate swallowing pills, but it also available in caplets.
2) Vick’s DayQuil and NyQuil
The next most effective OTC remedy is DayQuil and NyQuil, these products help relieve headaches, throat pain, cough and congestion.
3) Vick’s Vapor Rub
This one has been passed down from generations to generations, maybe you’ve heard it from your grand mother or great grandmother, but older generation claim that Vapor Rub works as a decongestant, and relieves other cold symptoms rubbing it on your chest, and feet and then putting socks on (at bedtime). However there’s no conclusive or substantial evidence that it does that, but studies show that at least the menthol odor tricks the brain into thinking that your nose is decongested. Also, the menthol and eucalyptus help reduce stress levels, which allow you to get good rest at night, so it’s worth a try.
4) Pain Killers
You can skip this one if you are already taking a multi-symptom OTC remedy, because most of them contain pain-relieving components like acetaminophen or ibuprofen. OTC pain relievers can help with headaches or pain in general. Some of the best options are Tylenol (acetaminophen), Motrin (Ibuprofen), or Aleve (naproxen).
Breathing through your nose is not easy at all when you are sick, but nasal decongestants like Afrin, can actually help a lot. Just make sure you don’t use it for more than three days in a row because of potential side effects.
Rest! Rest! And Rest some more!
When you’re sick, is OK to be a couch potato! Your body is naturally tired because it’s fighting the virus or bacteria, so you need to give your body some rest and lots of sleep. The nighttime medicines mentioned above usually have diphenhydramine or similar components which make you drowsy and sleepy, but you should also take naps during the day, and drink lots of warm water, soups, and tea with lemon, for a speedy recovery.