Combating the winter cold

The winter cold is virtually inevitable, but luckily, G-Fit writer Erin Carson compiled a list of ways to combat the cold and limit the time you're stuck in bed.

Every winter there’s that fateful moment when the droopy, sniffling guy next to you on the bus sneezes to the high heavens, and you just know it’s all over. You’re going to get sick. Sadly, there’s no cure for the common cold, but there are a few ways to fight back and mitigate your misery.

Liquids: Drink and drink often. Juice, tea, soup and lots of water will help prevent dehydration as well as loosen up congestion. Along those lines, don’t underestimate chicken soup. The Mayo Clinic says, “It may be soothing because of its possible anti-inflammatory and mucus-thinning effects.” They also recommend staying away from caffeine and alcohol during a cold. So spend Friday night catching up on Parks and Recreation reruns rather than partying to limit the length of the cold.

Humidity: Dry environments are ideal for cold viruses, so pick up a humidifier (or take a hot shower). It can provide relief for cold symptoms like coughing and sneezing.

Salt water: A sore or scratchy throat can be one of the least pleasant symptoms of a cold. The Mayo Clinic says a glass of warm water with 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of salt dissolved in it can alleviate your misery.

Vitamin C: It may not help guard you against getting a cold, but the Mayo Clinic says the hearty vitamin can shorten the length of time you’re sick if you take it at the first signs of illness.

Exercise: U.S. News and World Report Health suggested that exercise not only helps strengthen your immune system, but it can help cold sufferers feel better. Let the fear of sickness motivate you to hit up Ernie Davis or Archbold Gymnasium at least three times a week.

Salve under the nose: WebMD suggests menthol, eucalyptus or camphor based salves to help clear nasal passages, as well as soothe a raw nose.

Pillows: Drainage is a beast. Sleep with an extra pillow to create a gradual slope that will get rid of drainage and help you get some rest. 

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