How to Get Rid of a Head Cold



How to Get Rid of a Head Cold
A head cold is nothing but a common cold in which the symptoms are more focused around the head and in the sinuses.
In the case of a head cold, along with other common cold or flu symptoms like a runny and stuffy nose, sore throat, cough, chills and fever, you will also have a headache.
The reason you get a headache with a head cold is due to the release of molecules called cytokines. These molecules are released in relation to the body’s immune defense against viruses and are known to cause headaches.
On top of that, swelling and thick secretions accumulating in the sinus cavities also lead to headaches and sinus pain.
The symptoms of a head cold are usually at their worst during the first two to three days, before they gradually start to improve. In adults and older children, the symptoms usually last about seven to 10 days, but can go on longer. The symptoms can have a huge impact on your daily life.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, adults get two or three colds each year, while kids can have eight or more annually .
Head colds are caused by several types of viruses, including rhinoviruses, human metapneumovirus (HMPV), human parainfluenza virus (HPIV) and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), to name a few.
The virus gets transmitted when an infected person sneezes or coughs, projecting droplets infected with the virus into the air or onto people around them.
It is also possible to catch a head cold by coming into contact with infected surfaces or things, such as doorknobs and mobile phones. The virus can enter the body through a person’s eyes, mouth or nose.
While anyone can get a head cold, certain factors increase the risk. Common risk factors include a weakened immune system, being under the age of 6, smoking, the winter season and exposure to other people with head colds, particularly school children.
Irrespective of the risk factors and causes, there is still no foolproof treatment for a head cold. However, a few lifestyle changes and home remedies can make you comfortable and accelerate the healing process.
Here are the top 5 ways to get rid of a head cold.
1. Inhale Steam
Steam is an effective way to treat a headache due to a head cold at home.
Steam inhalation will calm your mucous membranes and help clear the congestion in your nose. This in turn will reduce the headache.
2. Compresses
To open the congested nasal passages and combat a headache due to a cold, using hot and cold compresses is very effective.
While a warm, moist compress applied on the sinus regions will ease the pressure and loosen the thick mucus, a cold compress will provide pain relief by constricting the blood vessels in the sinus regions.
3. Garlic
To deal with the symptoms of a head cold, garlic is very effective. It contains the compound allicin, which has antiviral properties that will fight the rhinovirus and certain other viruses. This means it can help kill the virus responsible for your head cold.
4. Ginger
Ginger is also beneficial in the treatment of a head cold.
A 2013 study published in PLOS ONE reports that ginger has antiviral properties . This means it can help fight the root cause of the problem.
5. Chicken Soup
Having a bowl of warm, homemade chicken soup is another simple yet effective way to deal with head cold symptoms.
It provides relief from common cold symptoms through its action on white blood cells that play a main role in fighting infections. Also, the steam that you inhale while having hot chicken soup helps loosen nasal congestion, which in turn eases the headache.
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