Flu is a viral infection caused by different strains of a respiratory virus called influenza virus, which makes it difficult for researchers to develop a generalized vaccine for this disease.
With the flu season beginning in September or October, this infection can hit your entire body with vengeance, irrespective of your age, by manifesting itself in the form of cold, dry cough, sneezes, sore throat, weakness, body pains, loss of appetite, runny or a congested nose and needless to say, high fever.
Even though, fever might subside in 3-4 days by using the prescribed medications, its associated, unpleasant symptoms can be quite distressing. If you are currently suffering from flu or if you are susceptible to it, gear up and prepare yourself to fight the infection by familiarizing yourself with the simple home remedies that can be used for alleviating the symptoms of flu.
Moreover, flu is a contagious disease, which means that you might spread the disease to the rest of your family members through the droplets released while coughing or sneezing and also by merely touching them with your hands. This makes it even more important for you to start the treatment at home as soon as possible to obtain quick relief from the symptoms of flu.
5 Tips To Cure Flu
Nasal Saline Irrigation
A nasal saline solution (water + salt) is one of the most effective remedies for rinsing your sinuses and pulling out the phlegm and mucus that blocks the sinuses. The heat promotes the easy passage of mucus by thinning and melting it and salt being a powerful dehydrant, helps in killing the virus by drawing water from the cells through osmosis.
Take 8 ounces of distilled and warm water and add 1/4th teaspoon of kosher or sea salt and 1/4th teaspoon of baking soda to it. Pour this solution in a neti pot, tilt your head towards one side and pass the saline solution through one nostril. The solution will pass through the nose and the back of your throat and come out of the other nostril.
You can also use a bulb syringe to squirt the saline water into one nostril at a time by pressing the other nostril with your finger. Allow the water to pass through your nasal passages and then drain it by gently blowing your nose.
Have you ever experienced the soothing and relaxing feeling by just inhaling the vapors, while sipping a hot liquid? Well, it is not just the content of the tea but the steam alone can give you great relief from cold, sore throat, headaches and other symptoms associated with flu.
The virus that inhabits your respiratory tract cannot withstand the heat and is most often killed by steam. Hence, inhaling steam can prevent the virus from reproducing, which can in turn, deteriorate your condition. Place your head at a considerable distance from a pot containing hot water and inhale the steam by covering your head with a towel. Add 2-3 drops of eucalyptus oil to the water for utilizing the anti-septic properties of eucalyptus for destroying the infection causing microorganisms.
Replace Solid Food With Fluids
With a constant runny nose and sweats that you experience due to fever, your body is bound to lose considerable amount of water. Re-hydrate your body by drinking at least 6-8 glasses of water a day and consume more amounts of fluids like vegetable soup, chicken soup, fruit juices, etc., to ensure that you get sufficient amount of vitamins and minerals for strengthening your immune system.
Sip decaffeinated, herbal teas like green tea, chamomile tea, peppermint tea, etc., to utilize their anti-oxidant properties for eliminating free radicals from your body that can weaken your immune system. Moreover, with a loss of appetite and a lack of sense of taste, hot fluids and drinks can fill you up and give your sore throat a soothing effect.
Ginger Honey Lemon Tonic
Ginger contains a compound called gingerol that is responsible for boosting the ability of the immune system to combat an infection. Besides giving a warm feeling that helps to sweat out fever, its anti-viral properties help in killing the viruses that inhabit the nasal passage and the sinuses, thus flushing out the mucus at a faster rate.
Lemon contains vitamin C, which is a very powerful immune system stimulant. Honey helps to soothe a sore throat by eliminating the infection causing microorganisms. To enjoy this tonic, boil one cup of water and add an inch of dried ginger root. Keep it on a low flame and add one lemon to the hot water. Pour it in mug, add a teaspoon of honey and stir well. Drink this drink 2-3 times a day to get rid of the symptoms of flu.
Get Plenty Of Rest
Considering the fatigue that you will be experiencing while suffering from flu, you will anyway not feel like getting up and working. Well, give yourself an excuse and take rest to enable your body to fight the infection better. While experiencing cold, the body releases histamines to fight the infection, which also induce sleep.
If your temperature is maintained below 102°F, then avoid taking any medications to lower the fever, since a higher body temperature speeds up the flow of white blood cells and other immune cells to the site of infection, thus enabling the body’s natural healing abilities. Therefore, get adequate amount of sleep and enhance your immune system to get back on the road of recovery in a shorter duration of time. If left untreated, flu can be deadly, since the influenza virus can propagate inside the body, infecting the lungs, bronchial tract, ears, sinuses, joints, etc., and can eventually lead to pneumonia, respiratory failure and death.
Even though, there is no dearth of decongestants, antihistamines and over-the counter analgesics like ibuprofen, acetaminophen, etc., available in the market for treating flu, nothing can beat natural home remedies for treating medical illnesses, without causing any adverse effects that most medications are associated with. However, if the fever persists for more than 2-3 days, you should consult a doctor to avoid the other complications associated with flu.
Caution: Please use Home Remedies after Proper Research and Guidance. You accept that you are following any advice at your own risk and will properly research or consult healthcare professional.