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How Long Do Cold or Flu Symptoms Last?

Find out how long your symptoms last when you have a cold or flu.

When you feel yourself coming down with a common cold or the flu, you’re probably wondering, how long will it last?

Cold

Typical common cold symptoms like sneezing, runny nose, sore throat, and cough can last from 2 to 14 days.1 However, about two-thirds of people recover in about 1 week.

Flu

For the flu, the main symptoms are coughing, aching, a high fever, and extreme fatigue.1 Like a cold, most people recuperate within a week, but flu symptoms are more severe.2

Can you make it go away faster?

If you’ve caught a cold or the flu, there are ways to relieve your symptoms while you recover. A cold or the flu typically has a life cycle of about 1 week. The key to recovering and feeling like yourself sooner is maintaining a strong immune system. That means getting enough sleep and drinking plenty of water.3 You should also avoid drinks like coffee, tea, and colas because they contain caffeine that can dehydrate you.

How to get symptom relief

Colds account for more school absences and missed work than any other illness. However, over-the-counter cold and flu medicines, such as Theraflu, will help ease your symptoms. Getting symptom relief during sleep can help you feel better. After all, sleep-deprived people produce fewer virus-fighting cells.4 If symptoms persist, consult your doctor.

There are also at-home remedies you can do to ease your symptoms of a cold or the flu.

Cold

Some natural ways to relieve your cold symptoms are:

1. Hydrate

Drinking more fluids will help you if you have a cold because it can relieve any congestion you have. Water, juice, and tea can think out any mucus build-up you have in your nasal passage and chest.5

2. Sleep

Sleep is important when you’re sick because while you’re sleeping, your body uses the time to reenergize itself. Your immune system strengthens while you’re sleep, and that can help you recover from sicknesses like a cold.6

3. Use honey

Putting honey in your warm water or tea can help ease cold symptoms like congestion or a sore throat. Honey has properties in it that help reduce viruses and bacteria.6

4. Eat chicken soup

Not only is chicken soup warm and delicious, but its basic ingredients have properties to weaken your cold symptoms. Chicken soup has anti-inflammatory ingredients that can reduce swelling in your throat and nasal passage.6

Flu

  • Some of the aforementioned cold remedies might also help relieve symptoms you have from a flu virus. Cultures from around the world have found their own creative ways to relieve symptoms of the flu as well.
  • They add different ingredients to their warm tea when sick with a flu virus. Things like ginger, garlic, and lemon have similar relieving effects as honey.7
  • Some cultures also use foot baths to let the steam travel through your body from your feet and up.7 This warmth can help loosen congestion in your nose and chest.
  • Some people like to use menthol oils, like peppermint, to relieve their symptoms when sick. Additionally, some cultures use shea butter as a way to relieve congestion.7

 

No matter if you have a cold or flu, Theraflu makes products that can help relieve your fever, cough, or sore throat

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Hydrate. Drinking more fluids will help you if you have a cold because it can relieve any congestion you have. Water, juice, and tea can think out any mucus build-up you have in your nasal passage and chest.5

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