Home remedies that actually work when you have ‘the super cold’


Have you caught this horrible cold yet? (Picture: Getty)

There’s a nasty cold going around.

Not uncommon for this time of year, but after 18 months of minimal interaction followed by being released back into the world, this year’s bug seems to be hitting us really hard.

People on social media have called it the ‘worst cold ever’, or ‘the super cold’, and it doesn’t sound fun.

Coughing, sneezing, fever, congestion – the works. People who have caught this nasty cold (and have ruled out Covid with a negative test), are reporting lots of horrible symptoms that linger for a week or more.

We all know what it feels like to be struck down with a bad cold. It saps your energy, makes it hard to sleep, makes it hard to focus on work, or even enjoy a nice meal. But, there are remedies you can try to give you some relief.

Abbas Kanani, the superintendent pharmacist at Chemist Click, has shared his top tips to try at home to help you get back to feeling like yourself:

Hot lemon and honey

‘A hot lemon and honey drink is a great, warming beverage which helps to soothe symptoms of a cold, such as a sore throat or congestion,’ says Abbas.

He says the lemon juice helps to alleviate any congestion and the honey soothes the throat and also offers anti-inflammatory properties – which is just what your body needs.

‘You can also add ginger to the honey and lemon tea which should add an extra kick and help immunity.’

Nasal cleanse

Abbas suggests a nasal cleanse, or sinus cleanse, as it’s a great way to clear any congestion in the nose – which should allow you to breathe through your nose a little easier.

‘Do this using a salt water solution once or twice a day,’ suggests Abbas.

‘Tip your head at an angle over your bath or sink and try to use a funnel like tool or even a water bottle with a spout and essentially pour or shoot the salt water solution straight into your nose, this surge of water should help to flush out any nasal mucus whilst also cleaning the area of any mucus or other irritants’

Peppermint leaves

This natural ingredient tastes great, but Abbas says the leaves are also known to help with any nasty coughs.

‘The menthol in peppermint acts to soothe the throat as well as breaking up any decongestant and helping to get rid of any mucus,’ he explains.

‘You can either drink peppermint tea to help with your cough, or you can also add peppermint to a bowl of hot water and allow the steam to enter your mouth and nasal passages which should help to soothe the affected area.

‘Add around three drops of peppermint oil to a bowl of hot, steaming water. Put a towel over your head so you trap the steam and take deep breaths over the water.

‘Do this for as long as need be, but around 10 minutes should be enough.’

Gargle salt water

This isn’t the most pleasant home remedy out there, but it does work.

‘This is another great method that both helps a sore throat and a cough,’ says Abbas.

‘Not only does this method offer anti-bacterial properties but it should help to soothe tickly coughs as well as ridding of any nasty bacteria in your throat and tonsils.’

How to tell the difference between a cold and Covid

While the symptoms of this nasty cold are similar to those experienced by people suffering from Covid, they don’t necessarily indicate you have the virus.

Symptoms for the ‘worst cold ever’, including those reported by people on social media, involve having:

  • A sore or scratchy throat
  • Losing your voice
  • Body aches
  • Continuous headaches
  • Frequent sneezing
  • A runny nose
  • A continuous cough
  • A change in smell or taste
  • A fever or temperature from 38 degrees Celsius and above

However, as several symptoms are also experienced by those with Covid, get a PCR test and stay at home if you have the following:

  • A continuous cough
  • A fever or temperature
  • A change in smell or taste

If you’re having any new symptoms it’s always worth getting a lateral flow or PCR test to be sure, even if it feels like you just have a cold.

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