Flu and cold are among the most common viral diseases in the world. They affect the upper respiratory tract, causing symptoms such as sneezing, stuffy nose, coughing, sore throat, fever, chills, headache, muscle ache, fatigue and nausea.
Since flu is a viral disease, it cannot be cured with the use of antibiotics. Most doctors recommend simply waiting it out, because it is a self-limiting disease that goes away without any specific treatment, in five to ten days. Still, during that time, there is a lot a person can do to relieve the annoying symptoms and to make the disease go away faster.
Tips for treating flu
The way in which a person blows his or her nose is actually very important in treatment of flu. The material that accumulates in nasal passages and in sinuses needs to be evacuated in order to prevent bacteria from causing a secondary infection. Not only that- blowing the nose relieves the pressure and pain in the face and makes breathing easier again. The right way to blow the nose is to do it one nostril at a time, while the other is closed with a finger. The paper tissue used for this should be discarded right away in a sanitary manner.
The body needs a lot of rest because it works very hard to fight the virus. In that process, the body needs all the energy it can get, which is why it is important to take it easy and stay in bed as much as possible. When staying in bed, it is recommended to use an extra pillow. If the head is slightly elevated, the drainage of the mucus in the nose will be easier.
Gargling with salt water is a great way to soothe sore throat and to disinfect the mouth. It is completely safe and natural so it can be done several times a day. Salt water is also great for disinfecting the nose and it can be done with the help of a neti pot.
Inhaling vapors from a large bowl of boiled water or taking a steamy shower will break the mucus in the nose and lungs and make it much easier to breathe.
Hot or warm beverages, such as herbal tea, green tea or warm milk, also relieve sore throat and the congestion. They also help with the chills.
Sinus congestion due to flu can be relieved with hot or cold packs placed gently on the area under the eyes and on the forehead.
Fever can be reduced with over-the-counter drugs for that purpose, but it is much more natural to take a shower using lukewarm water and to apply a washcloth soaked in ice cold water on the forehead, arms, legs and feet.