Treat Flulike Symptoms

Home remedies can help relieve cold and flu symptoms.

You may find it hard to sleep when your nose is congested, you are burning with fever, and you can’t stop coughing. Whether you have the flu or another type of respiratory virus, you may experience these and other symptoms, including sneezing, muscle aches, watery eyes, and fatigue. While no cure exists for the flu virus, you can treat your symptoms and increase your comfort while you recover.


1. Go to bed. Continuing your normal activities when you don’t feel well may make you feel worse and can expose friends, relatives and coworkers to your illness. Rest is what your body needs and will give it time to recover from the effects of your illness.

2. Take pain medication as needed. Acetaminophen, ibuprofen, naproxen and other over-the-counter pain medications can help relieve a sore throat and headache and reduce your fever. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for dosages and don’t take more than the recommended amount without consulting your doctor.

3. Increase your fluid intake. Drink a lot of water, as well as clear drinks and clear soups to help prevent dehydration and to loosen the mucus.

4. Use decongestant nasal sprays as directed for a few days. The Mayo Clinic warns against using sprays for more than a few days because prolonged use can cause chronic rebound inflammation of mucus membranes.

5. Moisten your nasal passages with saline drops. Saline drops keep the passages lubricated and help loosen excess mucus.

6. Ease your sore throat with lozenges or sprays. You also can make a soothing gargle by stirring together a half a teaspoon of salt to 8 ounces of warm water.

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7. Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air and keep your nose and throat from feeling dry and scratchy.

8. Eat a steaming bowl of chicken soup if you aren’t feeling well. Scientists are now realizing what mothers have known for years: chicken soup helps relieve congestion and boost your immune system response.