There is no “cure” for the common cold, which is actually caused by around 200 different viruses. However, there are steps you can encourage your senior loved one to take during the time of year when more colds tend to occur to relieve symptoms and shorten the duration of a cold. If your loved one wants to avoid medications that may have unintended side effects like increased drowsiness, consider “natural cold cures” just as likely to provide symptom relief. Here are a few remedies Douglas County senior care professionals have had success with.
Warm Salt Water
Mix a little salt and baking soda into an 8 once glass of water. The resulting concoction is squirted directly into the nostrils with a syringe to relieve congestion. Each nostril is treated with 2-3 squirts while the other nostril is lightly closed.
Hot liquids like ginger tea or herbal tea with a little honey can help prevent dehydration and relieve nasal congestion. There’s also research suggesting that common ingredients in chicken soup give the body’s immune system a natural boost.
Ginseng has long-been hailed for its many health benefits. The popular herb is often consumed in supplement form. A Canadian study found that daily doses of ginseng helped reduce the severity and duration of cold symptoms.
From a tall glass of orange juice to supplements, there are many ways to get an added dose of vitamin C when early cold symptoms are first observed, which is when it tends to be most effective. Natural sources of vitamin C include citrus fruits and dark, leafy green vegetables.
Whether it’s in raw form or supplement form, garlic has properties that can block enzymes responsible for viral infections like the common cold. Making some favorite recipes with garlic during cold and flu season can be equally beneficial.
If your senior loved one has a full-blown cold, over-the-counter remedies like decongestants, antihistamines, and pain relievers can further help ease more severe symptoms not likely to respond to natural remedies. It’s also important to watch for signs of pneumonia and other respiratory aliments that sometimes develop from colds in seniors.
Learn more about promoting your loved one’s health year-round from the dedicated staff at Home Care Assistance. As a leading provider of live-in, hourly, and respite care Douglas County families rely on, helping local seniors maintain optimal wellbeing is our number one priority. Our caregivers are available 24/7 and can help with a wide variety of everyday tasks, we offer flexible scheduling, and we never ask clients to sign a long-term contract. Give us a call today at 720-580-5378 for more information.