While a cold typically lasts a few weeks, symptoms like nasal congestion, sneezing, coughing, and a sore throat can be especially problematic for seniors. As the holiday season approaches, in-home caregivers of senior loved ones can help prevent a lengthy bout with the common cold by turning to natural remedies to avoid adverse medication reactions like drowsiness and fatigue. Here are a few favorites from Jefferson County senior home care professionals.
The antibacterial and antiviral properties of garlic make it a tasty choice for easing senior cold symptoms. The allicin in garlic also helps open nasal passages and remove toxins from the body.
Nutrients in honey like iron, magnesium, and manganese coupled with bacteria-fighting enzymes sooth irritated throats and help reduce the lifespan of the typical cold. A few teaspoons of honey in a cup of herbal tea should produce results within a few hours for seniors showing early signs of a cold.
Ginger has strong anti-inflammatory and anti-viral properties that make it a good natural remedy for reducing cold symptoms. A mixture of ginger powder, ghee (clarified butter), and jaggery sugar (a dark, coarse sugar) eases runny noses when consumed on an empty stomach every morning until cold symptoms disappear.
Homemade chicken soup made with chicken and organic vegetables is loaded with antioxidants and essential nutrients. It’s this combination that makes the classic remedy effective for nursing a cold and naturally boosting senior immunity.
Epsom Salt Baths
It’s believed that Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) has natural detoxification properties that can speed up the healing process. A bath with this soothing salt can also help seniors relax and get a better night’s sleep, which also helps ease cold symptoms.
Seniors can further reduce their odds of catching a cold with a diet that includes a mix of foods with reported or confirmed health benefits. Vitamin C-rich foods like blueberries and bell peppers may help with fever and general aches, chili peppers may loosen mucus, and the phytochemicals in onions may prevent a cold from turning into something more substantial like bronchitis.
Learn more about promoting senior health year-round by reaching out to the dedicated staff at Home Care Assistance. We provide live-in, hourly, and respite care Jefferson County families count on, providing support for seniors and their loved ones with everything from running errands to providing relief for family caregivers. Give us a call at (303) 987-5992 and request a complimentary in-home consultation.