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How to Treat Colds & Fevers Using Home Remedies

By Kate Marlowe ; Updated August 14, 2017

There is no scientifically proven cure for the common cold, but you can use remedies at home to alleviate the symptoms while your body is fighting the infection. A fever is the body's way of fighting an infection, but it can make you uncomfortable, and at-home fever remedies can alleviate some of the discomfort. Keep in mind that a high fever that lasts for more than a few days, or a cold that doesn't seem to be going away, are possible signs of a more serious problem that needs to be discussed with a doctor.

  1. Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated and help the body rid itself of the virus. Fluids will also help to soothe a cough or sore throat. The fluids should be caffeine and sugar free. Water and broth soups are excellent choices.

  2. Take a dose of supplemental vitamin C to boost the immune system. You can get this in pill, chewable or liquid form. You can also drink juices high in vitamin C such as orange juice.

  3. Use saline spray as directed. This can help with nasal congestion and post-nasal drip. Consider using a Neti pot, a more comprehensive way to clear the sinus passages (see Resources).

  4. Pour essential oils in a sink mixed with water. Place a towel over your head and breathe the essential oils in to help in clearing the nasal passages. Eucalyptus and peppermint oils are great for clearing congestion.

  5. Dip a washcloth in cold water and wring it out. Place the cold washcloth over the forehead or back of the neck. This will help with making you comfortable if you are running a fever.

  6. Tip

    Your physician may recommended particular brands of nasal spray and vitamins for you.

    Place the washcloth in a freezer for even more comfort during a fever. You can use two and alternate them in and out of the freezer to always have a cold one on hand.


    Consult with your physician prior to starting any new remedies for your health.

    At-home remedies are not substitutes for conventional medical care.

    Women who are pregnant or post-menopausal should discuss remedies with their physician.

    Essential oils should be used only as directed.

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