Head cold is a viral attack that strikes the mucous membrane of the nose. It is an upper respiratory tract infection and is typically marked by mild to moderate headache, stuffy or runny nose, chest congestion, watery eyes, fever and frequent bouts of sneezing. There are number of treatment options for relieving head cold but when it affects during pregnancy, quite a few head cold remedies, especially those involving herbs have to be avoided. Focus should be more on using home remedies as they help to shorten the duration of head cold safely. It is discussed below:
Head Cold Remedies During Pregnancy
Head cold while pregnant usually does not last for more than 2 weeks but during this period symptoms that occur can be quite bothersome. Pregnant women can go for any of the following remedies to get rid of head cold.
Ensure Adequate Fluid Intake
A runny nose and fever that accompanies a head cold can make a person dehydrated if adequate water is not consumed. In such a scenario, drinking fluids in sufficient amounts is necessary to prevent head cold symptoms from worsening. Drinking fluids, especially water, orange and grapefruit juice not only prevents dehydration but can also relieve congestion. Drinking 6-8 glasses of fluids assists to eliminate the toxins out of the body through urine. This in turn, helps to reduce severity of upper respiratory tract infection.
A bowl of chicken soup is an age-old remedy to ease symptoms of common cold. It also works well as cold medicine for pregnant women. Chicken soup acts as an excellent anti-inflammatory agent, which is the reason why many experience relief from sore throat and stuffy nose. A chicken soup that consists of chicken, onions, turnips, sweet potato, carrots, parsley, parsnips and celery stems is considered to be one of the best home remedies for head cold and can work wonders to suppress inflammation and decrease the duration of head cold.
Natural head cold remedies that involve inhaling steam is also very effective in alleviating symptoms. Take a bowl of water and heat it until it starts boiling. Switch off the gas and put the bowl on a table. With head covered with a towel and facing the bowl, start breathing through the nose. Inhaling steam is found to be extremely effective to clear stuffy nose. In fact, steam inhalation is a proven remedy to lessen congestion and sinus trouble associated with head cold.
Install a Humidifier
Install a humidifier in your room and adjust its settings such that surrounding air is warm and moist. Dry air can aggravate symptoms of head cold and so to avoid this, installation of humidifier is recommended. A humidifier improves moisture content of air, which can play a crucial role to ease congestion associated with common cold. Breathing warm moist air assists in liquefying and even vaporizing the mucus. When the humidifier is working properly, breathing becomes simpler in spite of having cold.
Salt Water Gargle
To get relief from scratchy sore throat, what better way than gargling with salt water. Make a salt water solution by mixing half a teaspoon of salt with a glass of warm water. Gargling with salt water frequently can contribute in reducing the inflammation and the burning sensation in the throat, a common complaint among head cold patients.
This is yet another head cold medicine that can ease breathing. Simply rubbing it on the chest and the nose provides instant relief from congestion. However, use it as directed on the label for maximum effectiveness.
Saline Nasal Drops
Using a plain nasal spray or drops is extreme effective to make breathing easier. Saline nasal drops, which is nothing but a mixture of salt and water help in thinning out the mucus and provides comfort to inflamed nasal passages. In order to prepare this solution, take a glass of water (8 ounces) and dissolve 1/4th teaspoon of salt into it. Put few drops of this solution in the nostrils using a clean dropper. After 5 minutes, exhale air forcefully through the nose.
Head cold in pregnant women or an otherwise healthy individuals, demands exclusion of certain foods. Dairy products like ice cream, extremely cold beverages, processed and fried foods should also be avoided as they worsen common cold symptoms and promote production of mucus.