5 Ways to Treat Summer Colds

summer coldThere you are, enjoying your active summer, when all of a sudden, BAM: You've got a summer cold. Of all the -- why now?!? Colds aren't only for winter. It's just as easy to pass germs in warm weather, maybe even easier. Plus, you're traveling, going in and out of air-conditioned spaces, and maybe a little dehydrated to boot. No wonder you're sick.

So what the heck do you do with a summer cold? When you get the sniffles in the winter, you cozy up with blankets, sipping hot tea and chicken soup. But when you get sick in the summer, staying comfortable and fighting off that cold can be a whole other ball game. 

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summer colds

First, is it allergies? Here's how you can tell: With colds, the symptoms arrive one by one. With allergies, they hit you all at once. Also, your nasal discharge will stay runny and clear with allergies, but will change to become thicker with a cold.

More from The Stir: Is It a Cold or Allergies? 4 Ways to Tell the Difference 

1. Get some rest. Easier said than done during the summer months, when we have more daylight and less nighttime. But just like in the winter, sleep is going to help your body fight off the virus. Wear an eye mask and close the drapes. Take a day off. It's tempting to take some meds and try to muscle through it, but that's just going to prolong the cold's unwelcome visit.

2. Hydrate. Drinking plenty of fluids helps flush out the germs any time of the year. But it's especially important in the summer, when we're more likely to be dehydrated. Be kind to yourself and drink lots of water and other clear, unsweetened beverages.

3. Eat some fruit. This time of year, there's more fresh fruit than ever. And fruit that's recently picked and grown locally will have more of those vitamins you need right now. Plus, fruit is loaded with water.

4. Get outside. You know that extra rest you're supposed to be getting? You could try napping in your backyard. Getting out of the drying air-conditioning (terrible for colds) is better for your respiratory system. And as an extra bonus, those ultraviolet rays can actually help fight off your virus.  

5. Gargle with warm saltwater. If you've got a sore throat but aren't feeling the hot teas and soups, try gargling a saltwater solution of half a teaspoon of salt per cup of water. Do this several times a day. Accidentally gulping down seawater at the beach does not count.

Do you think summer colds feel worse than winter colds?

 

Image © iStock/macniak, Image ©iStock.com/AntiGerasim

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