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Cold, Flu, & Cough Health Center

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Home Remedies for Fast Flu Relief

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Saline Rinse Tips

Try this recipe:

  1. Mix 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon baking soda in 8 ounces of warm water.
  2. Fill a bulb syringe with the water.
  3. Learn over the bathroom sink, hold one nostril closed with your finger and squirt the mixture into the other side. Let it drain and gently blow your nose.
  4. Repeat 2-3 times in each nostril.

You can also use a neti pot. It looks like a little teapot. You can find them at most pharmacies and natural food stores.

  1. Fill the pot with the solution packets or the homemade saline solution above.
  2. Lean over the bathroom sink, tilt your head to one side, and pour the water straight into one nostril.
  3. The solution will go into your nasal cavity and run out the other side of your nose and the back of your throat.
  4. Spit out the drainage, and gently blow to clear the passages.

Use distilled, sterile, or previously boiled water to make up the irrigation solution. Rinse the pot or other device after each use and leave it open to air dry.

One company that makes neti pots also offers a nasal rinse in a squeeze bottle.

Cough Relief

Cough syrup : Try an over-the-counter product to calm your hack. You can select from a suppressant to calm it, an expectorant (guaifenesin) to help you cough up gunk, or a medicine you put on your skin, like a menthol rub for your chest. If you have asthma or other lung disease, don’t use a suppressant. Ask your doctor what you should pick. Don’t give over-the-counter cough and cold medicines to children under 4.

Cough drops: Keep sugar-free cough drops or hard candy nearby to calm a tickle in your throat. A teaspoon of honey might also help.

Scratchy Throat and Congestion

Sip some soup: If it's hard to swallow without pain, try hot chicken soup. Add pepper, garlic, curry powder, or other pungent spices to thin mucus in your mouth, throat, and lungs. It can pump up the number of disease-fighting white blood cells in your immune system.

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