Almost never fails.  Too much running around, too little sleep, high stress.  Soon I get a sore throat followed by the sniffles.

There is a plethora of advice from everyone to treat the common cold.  There's a multi-billion-dollar industry in medications.  While there is no cure yet, I strongly believe every person has a set of treatments that gives them some relief.  So the regiments vary, and what works for one won't for another.

Here are my practices to treat a cold.

Orange Juice

When I start feeling run down, a glass of orange juice perks me back up.

Honey and Apple Cider Vinegar

A lady friend tipped me to this one.  At the very first sign of illness, the slight sore throat or the mild sniffling, mix a tablespoon of honey and a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in a cup of warm water.  I think the idea is a that the vinegar raises the acidity in the blood to kill the virus.  The taste is really strong, hard to drink, but I have noticed that just the vinegar smell will open my sinuses a bit.  Drink two cups a day.

Chicken soup
Credit: Rafal Stachura, TSM Media Center

Chicken Soup

Years ago I heard of a study that chicken noodle soup has some chemical that slows down mucus production, which along with sneezing and coughing is a side effect of the body fighting off the virus.  Homemade is best, but even canned soup has this chemical.  Though the research is inconclusive, chicken soup provides nutrients, hydration and comfort through the cold.

Hall's Cough Drops

I can't stand the menthol taste, but the medicated vapors do allow freer breathing and sore throat relief.  These drops come in strawberry and cherry flavor which are much more palatable.

Okay, a bathtub might work too. Credit: Image Source, TSM Media Center

Vapor Rub and Inclined Sleeping

Nights are the worst with a cold.  All the congestion and coughing.  I discovered a pattern where the morning starts awful, gradually gets better until I feel pretty good, then slide downhill in the late afternoon and evening 'til I feel icky at bedtime.  The best trick I found to deal with nighttime sickness is to apply a little vapor rub on top of the sterum, right under my nose, then prop up the pillows so I'm sleeping more upright like in an easy chair.  The idea is to drain away the congestion from the nose.

Those are my semi-reliable ways to deal with a cold.  Do you have sure-fire symptom relief?  Please send me a message, and later I will post all the methods received.  I look forward to some wild ways we play doctor in these cases.

When all else fails, there is one more:

Tea with Honey, Lemon and Whiskey

Won't cure a thing.  But by the third cup, you stop caring.

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