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How To Get Rid of A Cold

Updated on March 27, 2013

We Don't Like Colds...

I don't know of anyone who enjoys getting colds. Your head feels huge, your nose gets stuffed up and you can't breathe, your throat gets sore, your eyes hurt....  it's like anything and everything above your neck doesn't even feel connected to you. It's not a life-threatening illness, but its very uncomfortable.

Right now... I have a cold, which is what inspired me to write this lens. I did some research on how to get rid of a cold, and so far, I am feeling better! I decided that I would like to share this info and put it all in one place, since I know many people are probably looking for the same answers about colds that I have been looking for. Keep reading to learn more. And if you have any tips you'd like to add, then post them on this lens! 

If you are hit with a cold, chances are you feel really bad and want to get rid of it as soon as possible. Well, the bad news is, there is no insta-cure for getting rid of a cold in a minute. However, there are tons of things you can do to help reduce your symptoms and get over your cold faster. Besides taking medecine! There's many natural, easy things you can do without changing your routine too much!

The Boring Part of this Lens

What exactly is a cold

This is the boring part because most of you don't really care what on earth a cold is, or how it works. You just want to know how to get rid of it. Don't blame you! But let me just give a quick little introduction to what a cold is.... just so you can see where all the "how to get rid of a cold" advice comes from. It will help you sort out rumor from truth! Of course, if you really don't care, then skip this part!

The common cold comes from a virus that infects the upper respiratory tract (that includes your nose and throat).. There. That's all it is. It's a virus! Contrary to common belief, it is not caught from being in the cold. (However, when you are cold, your body spend alot of energy trying to warm you up; thus distributing less energy to protecting your immune system. So you are more likely to catch a cold when you are cold. But, the temperature does not give you a cold.)

The germs multiply in your throat and spread from there. (hmmm.. maybe that explains why your throat gets sore??). Colds are highly contagious. In fact, that's exactly how they spread.

Interesting fact: You will never get the same cold twice. You're probably thinking... "I've had so many colds! That's impossible! How many different colds can there be?" Well... actually there's more than two hundred! Often the symptoms will be exactly the same, however, the actual virus is different. Once you get a cold, you will be immune to that virus. Sadly... there will be hundreds of other viruses coming on their way...

How To Get Rid of a Cold On YouTube

OTC Med's

Over the counter medicine's can help your symptoms. Though there is no cure for the common cold, you cannot really get a medicine that will kill the virus. However, you can find some good med's that will help your symptoms! I think everyone has a personal preference, and one med may work better for one person than another. Just a note: just because it is an off brand does NOT mean that it will be ineffective! Some of the best cold med's I've used have been Wal-Mart brand cold treatment. I DO NOT recommend DayQuil! I tried it and I didn't think that it helped me at all. I have heard that NyQuil is very effective, but I haven't tried it, and I wasn't too impressed with DayQuil, so it's up to you on that one!

My personal favorite is Zicam. One of my friends told me about it, nearly a year ago. The first time I tried it, it worked like a miracle! My symptoms were gone within a few hours of taking it, then after a day or two, I didn't notice any symptoms at all. It was like a miracle drug! The next time I used it was back in February. It didn't work so well, but that was my fault.... I got a little overzealous and decided to take as much as the dosage instructions would allow as often as I could. As a result, I probably drugged myself up just a bit too much (especially since I do not weigh as much as the typical person using Zicam-- i am pretty small for my age), and it had a reverse affect, which actually made my cold worse. This past summer, I tried Zicam when I first saw my cold coming on. And it worked amazingly! I experienced light symptoms for a few days, but I never actually "got" the cold.

Just try out some med's and see what works for you. Generally you will want something with acetaminophine as a pain reliver and fever-reducer. If you are congested, then you obviousy want a decongestant! Antihistamines are usually found in cold and allergy medications.

Cold Medicine On Amazon!!

Yup... apparently you can buy cold med on Amazon! Stock up or get some shipped overnight, right from the convenience of your own computer chair! How convenient is that?? Having a cold can be more like a vacation! You don't even have to leave your house to get med's!

Drink Plenty of Fluids

I know.... I know... you're sitting and reading this saying "duh!!". But many people don't realize just how important this really is! If you are dehydrated, then your body won't be able to fight off the virus. From personal experience, the more I drink, the faster the cold goes away. Don't drink alcohol!! That doesn't count. In fact, that will only make things worse. Drink plenty of water and warm liquids (i.e.- tea, coffee, hot chocolate, etc). Another great thing to drink is something like powerade or gatorade, or any sports drinks. They have electrolytes that will help your body retain the fluids it needs. Vitamin C drinks are good, as well! So, keep up on the fluids!

Why is water good for you? Click here to learn more!

Vitamin C

You've probably heard this, too. Vitamin C will help lessen your cold symptoms. It's debatable as to whether it will actually prevent a cold; however, it helps lessen your symptoms- which is basically the only thing you can do to alleviate a cold. Drink orange juice or citrus flavored teas or drinks. Have a vitamin C cough drop! Take some vitamin C vitamins! Eat an orange! Don't overdose... but make sure you are getting all the vitamin C you need. Does vitamin C really help the common cold? Learn more here!

Get Rid of Your Cold In A Day! - Or try to anyways....

Fresh Air

Go outside for a walk if you aren't feeling too bad. The fresh air will help you feel better physically, and it will help put you in a better mood, as well! I usually do this alot when I get sick to my stomach, and it helps alot then. But I've noticed it also helps when you have a cold. If you aren't feeling well enough to go for a walk, just try to sit outside! Especially if it's a pretty day outside. If it's freezing cold, I wouldn't recommend being outside for too long.

Books To Read When Your Sick- General

When you're sick, cuddling up in bed with a good book is one of the best remedies. Look for some good ones on Amazon! Buy some extra reads, that way next time you're sick, you'll have a book already waiting for you! Then you won't have to go to the library or go through the trouble of buying one then! You can have one already. So stock up now!


Your body need rest to heal. Some people look forward to laying in bed all day. Personally, I can't stand to lay around... even when I'm sick. So some of you reading this will immediately get off the computer and go crawl in bed. Which may not be a bad idea! But, some of you reading this will also decide that you don't want to go to bed. Which is fine! Though you can rest in bed, that is not the only way to rest. Taking a day off work is resting. Skipping your work out routine is resting. You don't have to lay in bed. Just relax. Don't work hard. Read a book... do something you want to do! Consider it a mini-vacation.

Books for Teens

Know a teen who's sick? Get them a book to read til they feel better! Are you a sick teen? Here's some good books to get. Even if you don't like reading, you might as well get something good to read til you feel better again! As a teenager, I can recommend these knowing that you will like them!

WARNING: This book is very addicting! Once you start, you can't stop! It will take your mind off your cold!! I finished it in 24 hours....


Eat Right

It's more important to eat right now than it was before! This means that you should not be consuming large amounts of sugar. In fact, cut back as much as you can! Stay away from dairy products, as they will increase mucus formation.

Only eat when you are hungry. Your body probably won't get as hungry as normal. This is because of God's amazing design of the human body! When you are sick, your are typically less hungry; that way your body can spend more energy to help you feel better, instead of using that energy to digest foods. So if you aren't hungry, then don't eat! Skipping a few meals won't kill you. Avoid protein foods or fat, starchy foods. Eat simple foods: raw fruit and vegetables, smoothies, fruit juice... stuff like that. Eat soup though! Chicken noodle soup is everyone's answer to the common cold. And honestly, I think it works! Click here to learn more about what to eat when you have a cold

Drink Hot Stuff!

Just wanted to re-emphasize this!! Even if you don't like hot drinks, then try to get over it. And notice I didn't say warm. I said hot!!! Think about it like this: The germs multiply in your throat. Heat kills germs. So... pushing something hot down your throat will.... kill the germs and stop them from multiplying! Thus helping you get rid of your cold! I've never tried this before.... I never have been a big fan of hot drinks. But with this cold, I am trying it! It seems to helping so far! Besides the fact that hot drinks kill the germs, they feel very, very soothing going down your throat, especially if its sore. Click here to learn more. If you want some recipes for hot teas click here

Cough Drops!

Don't forget your cough drops! One's with Vitamin C will help! My personal favorite is Halls Fruit Breezers. The goal is to find cough drops that work and taste good! This an vary from person to person!


Take a shower... it will make you feel better for a bunch of reasons. Mainly because the steam from the shower will help clear up your stuffed nose. When your nose is stuffed up and you can't seem to unstuff it no matter what, or when your head feels huge, then take a shower. It will help alot! Also, taking a shower will just make you feel better. Being clean always makes me feel better. You'll be washing off alot of germs, as well.

Gargle with Salt Water

This isn't my favorite.... but in my research, I found alot of people saying to do this! Just take a cup of hot water and put some salt in it and gargle before you go to bed. It will help break up the mucus. It will also help soothe your throat. This is something I haven't tried in a long time, so I can't say from personal experience if it will help or not. However, it makes sense! Try it and let me know how it works for you!

Sleep with a Couple Pillows

Keep your head elevated. This will help your nose not get so stuffed up at night. If you're like me, then that really bothers you! Especially when you wake up in the middle of the night and feel like you're blowing your brains out trying to unstuff your nose! It's really annoying. But I have found that sleeping with a pillow or two under your pillow will help you sleep alot better. Note: this may not help your neck, but... you can decide which is worse: a stuffed up nose, or a little bit of a sore neck. Try using soft pillows.


Cuddling up with a blanket and some hot tea and a good movie or book is pretty amazing when you have a cold! But you have to have a good blanket :)


Use your cold as a good reason to de-stress! Don't worry about your report that's due on Monday. Don't think about the things that bother you. Enjoy the time of rest, and just relax. I know some people instinctively worry more when they get sick. They think about everything that is due and how that getting sick is only going to put them more behind. Honestly, that will only make you feel worse! Emotionally and physically! Just chill out. Don't physically strain your body by working, but if you want to work on your report, then work on it when you feel like it! Don't stress yourself out. It will only make the recovery process that much longer. People understand when you are sick. So calm down, and relax. Enjoy a good excuse to sit back and unwind for a few days! Click here for a crash course in de-stressing!

Good Movies on Amazon!

Good movies are great when your sick! Curling up with a blanket and some hot tea and a movie is a great feeling! Stock up on some good movies now! Or if you are sick, buy one and have it shipped overnight so you can watch it tomorrow!

Home Remedies

Everyone has their own ideas of how to get better from a cold by mixing some obscure food items together and eating that. Some of them work, some of them don't! I could make a million lenses on home remedies, because there are so many out there! Therefore, I will give some links to them, but I will not write about all of them. If you do want to learn more, then look at the links below! Or simply do a Google Search on "home remedies to cure a cold".

Books for Children

Every kid loves their mom or dad to read them a good book when they aren't feeling well!

Other Stuff You Might Want When You're Sick

If you are sick, then you've found the right place to get all you need! If you aren't sick, then stock up!


Please note, I do make a small amount in affiliate revenue from sales made through this lens. i am trying to save money for college, and this is a great way to do so!

Post here if you know some other ideas of how to get rid of a cold. I love reading about home remedies and old traditions passed on and on. (Even if they don't work, it fascinates me to read about the stuff people tried and try to get rid of colds). Or, if you just wanna tell me what you think of my lens, then post below! The floor is yours- write away!

Have a Cold? Any of this stuff help? Know any other tips or tricks to get rid of colds?

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    • profile image


      5 years ago

      actually found out that you shouldnt have too much medication because it has all kinds of chemicals that arent good for youre body. hope this helped ;)

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Dude, I just wanted to say your awesome, I was reading all these things and they almost all work great. I want you to know that when you said, "God" I was like "awesome, nice to know that you are christian." I don't know why I feel so happy now, but I just got a great feeling about you, and that things will work out for the best for you in your life. God does have an amazing design of the body! I can't explain it, but somehow I can't wait until we meet in Heaven for eternity. (I know this isn't about colds But just wanted to comment on this.) (I am 12 years old) Anyway, see ya man!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Well considering all the mistakes made in spelling and grammar, the author will have a difficult time in college!

    • Joy Neasley profile image

      Joy Neasley 

      6 years ago from Nashville, TN

      i did not know that you could not get the same cold twice...hmmm...great lens.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Nice read, I just passed this onto a colleague who was doing some research on that. And he actually bought me lunch as I found it for him smile Thus let me rephrase that: Thank you for lunch! âCreativity comes from zeal to do something, generally it iâ¦

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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      You, my pal, ROCK! I found just the information I already searched everywhere and just couldn't find it. What a great website.

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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Thanks for sharing superb information. Your website is so cool. I'm impressed by the info that youâve on this web site. It reveals how nicely you perceive this subject. Bookmarked this web page, will come back for more articles.

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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Thank you so much for your good advice! After reading this, I obeyed all your recommendations and instantly I was feeling better!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I always believe that prevention is better than cure. So if you want to learn how to get rid of a cold, stay away from the possible causes of it such as stress, physical contact, etc. Avoid sharing utensils with a person infected with the virus. Also, make sure you always wash your hands before eating with them.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      A really good thing to drink is a tea made with cayenne pepper. This sounds hideous but helps your throat because of the reasons you say about hot drinks killing the germs, I think. Also it includes honey and lemon which are antibacterial and soothing. Have a go at this: In a mug put 2 tspns of runny honey, the juice of a whole lemon, 1 tspn cayenne pepper. Then fill to the top with boiling water. Drink it down! It really helps.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I wish I had read this leans two weeks ago. I work at a British university and very year around this time I go down witha cold. We call it 'freshers flu'! Thank you for visiting my lense too :)

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Wow, I just got better from a cold, then I read this. I realized that some of hing s I was doing wernt right. I bookmarked this link on my iPod so I can check it everytimI get a cold! This was an awsome lens!!!!

    • Gods-Sonflower profile image


      8 years ago

      No remedies, but just commenting:

      You always put so much into your lenses!! Great job!! :)


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